An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown





Curiosity doesn't matter any more. These days people don't want to be transported to emotional territories where they don't know how to react.


Hector Babenko


What is saved in the cinema when it achieves art is a spontaneous continuity with all mankind. It is not an art of the princes or the bourgeoisie. It is popular and vagrant. In the sky of the cinema, people learn what they might have been and discover what belongs to them apart from their single lives.


John Berger (1926-, British actor, critic)


Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.


Ingmar Bergman (1918-, Swedish stage, film writer, director)


Films can only be made by by-passing the will of those who appear in them, using not what they do, but what they are.


Robert Bresson (1907-1999, French film director)


My movie is born first in my head, dies on paper; is resuscitated by the living persons and real objects I use, which are killed on film but, placed in a certain order and projected on to a screen, come to life again like flowers in water.


Robert Bresson (1907-1999, French film director)


The making of a picture ought surely to be a rather fascinating adventure. It is not; it is an endless contention of tawdry egos, some of them powerful, almost all of them vociferous, and almost none of them capable of anything much more creative than credit-stealing and self-promotion.


Raymond Chandler (1888-1959, American author)


The motion picture is like a picture of a lady in a half-piece bathing suit. If she wore a few more clothes, you might be intrigued. If she wore no clothes at all, you might be shocked. But the way it is, you are occupied with noticing that her knees are too bony and that her toenails are too large. The modern film tries too hard to be real. Its techniques of illusion are so perfect that it requires no contribution from the audience but a mouthful of popcorn.


Raymond Chandler (1888-1959, American author)


If you can't believe a little in what you see on the screen, it's not worth wasting your time on cinema.


Serge Daney (1944-1992, French film critic)


Film is more than the twentieth-century art. It's another part of the twentieth-century mind. It's the world seen from inside. We've come to a certain point in the history of film. If a thing can be filmed, the film is implied in the thing itself. This is where we are. The twentieth century is on film. You have to ask yourself if there's anything about us more important than the fact that we're constantly on film, constantly watching ourselves.


Don Delillo (1926-, American author)


It struck me that the movies had spent more than half a century saying, "They lived happily ever after" and the following quarter-century warning that they'll be lucky to make it through the weekend. Possibly now we are entering a third era in which the movies will be sounding a note of cautious optimism: You know it just might work.


Nora Ephron (1941-, American author, journalist)


All you need for a movie is a gun and a girl.


Jean-Luc Godard (1930-, French filmmaker, author)


The cinema is not an art which films life: the cinema is something between art and life. Unlike painting and literature, the cinema both gives to life and takes from it, and I try to render this concept in my films. Literature and painting both exist as art from the very start; the cinema doesn't.


Jean-Luc Godard (1930-, French filmmaker, author)


As far as the filmmaking process is concerned, stars are essentially worthless -- and absolutely essential.


William Goldman (1931-, American author)


Pictures are for entertainment, messages should be delivered by Western Union.


Samuel Goldwyn (1882-1974, American film producer, founder of MGM)


We have taken beauty and exchanged it for stilted voices.


David Wark Griffiths (1875-1948, American pioneer film director)


I discovered early in my movie work that a movie is never any better than the stupidest man connected with it. There are times when this distinction may be given to the writer or director. Most often it belongs to the producer.


Ben Hecht (1894-1964, American newspaperman, novelist, playwright)


Movies are one of the bad habits that corrupted our century. Of their many sins, I offer as the worst their effect on the intellectual side of the nation. It is chiefly from that viewpoint I write of them -- as an eruption of trash that has lamed the American mind and retarded Americans from becoming a cultured people.


Ben Hecht (1894-1964, American newspaperman, novelist, playwright)


You should look straight at a film; that's the only way to see one. Film is not the art of scholars but of illiterates.


Werner Herzog (1942-, German film director)


Dialogue should simply be a sound among other sounds, just something that comes out of the mouths of people whose eyes tell the story in visual terms.


Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980, Anglo-American filmmaker)


For me, the cinema is not a slice of life, but a piece of cake.


Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980, Anglo-American filmmaker)


All television ever did was shrink the demand for ordinary movies. The demand for extraordinary movies increased. If any one thing is wrong with the movie industry today, it is the unrelenting effort to astonish.


Clive James (1939-, Australian-born writer, satirist, broadcaster, and critic)


The preserve of ambition and folly in pursuit of illusion, or delusion.


Derek Jarman (1942-, British filmmaker, artist, author)


The cinema, like the detective story, makes it possible to experience without danger all the excitement, passion and desirousness which must be repressed in a humanitarian ordering of life.


Carl Jung (1875-1961, Swiss psychiatrist)


The words "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang," which I saw on an Italian movie poster, are perhaps the briefest statement imaginable of the basic appeal of movies. This appeal is what attracts us, and ultimately what makes us despair when we begin to understand how seldom movies are more than this.


Pauline Kael (1919-, American film critic)


I don't want to see the uncut version of anything.


Jean Kerr (1923-, American author, playwright)


The movies today are too rich to have any room for genuine artists. They produce a few passable craftsmen, but no artists. Can you imagine a Beethoven making $100, 000 a year?


H. L. Mencken (1880-1956, American editor, author, critic, humorist)


My belief is that no movie, nothing in life, leaves people neutral. You either leave them up or you leave them down.


David Puttnam


Cinema is the culmination of the obsessive, mechanistic male drive in western culture. The movie projector is an Apollonian straight-shooter, demonstrating the link between aggression and art. Every pictorial framing is a ritual limitation, a barred precinct.


Camille Paglia (1947-, American author, critic, educator)


I guess I think that films have to be made totally by fascists -- there's no room for democracy in making film.


Don Alan Pennebaker (1930-, American filmmaker)


There's only one thing that can kill the movies, and that's education.


Will Rogers (1879-1935, American humorist, actor)


Does art reflect life? In movies, yes. Because more than any other art form, films have been a mirror held up to society's porous face.


Marjorie Rosen


All film directors, whether famous or obscure, regard themselves as misunderstood or underrated. Because of that, they all lie. They're obliged to overstate their own importance.


Francois Truffaut (1932-1984, French film critic and director)


In good films, there is always a directness that entirely frees us from the itch to interpret.


Susan Sontag (1933-, American essayist)


One of the joys of going to the movies was that it was trashy, and we should never lose that.


Oliver Stone (1946-, American director, writer, producer)


Film music should have the same relationship to the film drama that somebody's piano playing in my living room has to the book I am reading.


Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971, Russian composer)


People sometimes say that the way things happen in the movies is unreal, but actually it's the way things happen to you in life that's unreal. The movies make emotions look so strong and real, whereas when things really do happen to you, it's like watching television -- you don't feel anything.


Andy Warhol (1930-, American artist, filmmaker)


I rather think the cinema will die. Look at the energy being exerted to revive it -- yesterday it was color, today three dimensions. I don't give it forty years more. Witness the decline of conversation. Only the Irish have remained incomparable conversationalists, maybe because technical progress has passed them by.


Orson Welles (1915-1985, American film maker)


The director is simply the audience. So the terrible burden of the director is to take the place of that yawning vacuum, to be the audience and to select from what happens during the day which movement shall be a disaster and which a gala night. His job is to preside over accidents.


Orson Welles (1915-1985, American film maker)


A strange thing has happened -- while all the other arts were born naked, this, the youngest, has been born fully-clothed. It can say everything before it has anything to say. It is as if the savage tribe, instead of finding two bars of iron to play with, had found scattering the seashore fiddles, flutes, saxophones, trumpets, grand pianos by Erhard and Bechstein, and had begun with incredible energy, but without knowing a note of music, to hammer and thump upon them all at the same time.


Virginia Woolf (1882-1941, British novelist, essayist)


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