Film Comment:Would it be conceivable for you to make a computer-generated film in the manner of Pixar, provided it were possible to render fully realistic, lifelike images of humans?
Michael Haneke: Absolutely. It could be total cinéma d’auteur. But the pleasure and the value of collaborating with others, primarily with the actors, would be gone. The kind of tension that you always look for, between a written part and a real person who inhabits that part with all the additional qualities that are unique to this actor—that element would be gone.
"[Food] is one of my persistent obsessions that had its source in my childhood. I was a child who did not want to eat. My parents were desperate. They would pour fish oil, fortified wine and various other liquids into me to enhance the taste of food, and they would send me to ‘fattening’ camps and other such places. I ended up so weakened and bony that I could not stand and my mum had to push me in a wheelchair. I was not even accepted in school. Besides, a chewing mouth is quite a fitting symbol of this aggressive, all-devouring civilization."
"Food is perhaps the most apt symbol of our civilization because in its insatiable aggression, our civilization consumes everything around us: nature, animals, whole ethnic groups, cultures… everything gets digested in its utilitarian maw only to be excreted as money—the excrement of our times. Just like a small child our civilization considers its excrements to be the most valuable product it managed to squeeze out, and uses it to reward its favorites."
You once said that where a person lives tends to affect them. Los Angeles is a very particular, peculiar environment. What is it about this city that appeals to you?
Number one, the intense light. Also the different feelings in the air. But like every place it’s always changing. And it takes longer to appreciate L.A. than a lot of cities, because it’s so spread out, and every area has its own mood. What I really like about it is, from time to time, if you drive around – especially at night – you can get a little gust of wind of the great days of the silver screen. All there in, like, living memory. It just makes you wish that you’d lived in those times. I think that if you could go back, that’s the one place that you want to go back to. Maybe they didn’t appreciate it at the time, but it was an incredible place to be at the beginning of cinema. – David Lynch
"More than most pictures of the era, the movie captures the grubbiness and claustrophobia of a passenger train. People drift up and down the corridors, nosing around in things that are none of their business and harassing the overworked porters and conductor. The train speeds up, slows down, picks the worst moments to lurch around and knock everyone off balance. The set was stationary in order to save money, but director Richard Fleischer and cinematographer George E. Diskant made a virtue of that by using camera to suggest the train’s movement. They used a lot of hand-held work that gives an added feeling of reality. Scenes are lit in a natural-looking way, including a nice sequence at a rather seedy station, shot entirely in bright daylight. There’s no soundtrack either, just the whistles and rattles of the train."
Farran Smith Nehme, Self-Styled Siren
Alternative Candidate Rating: Cheap, flashy, and strictly poison under the gravy.
She [Delphine Seyrig] never made coffee in her life. I had to teach her to do this, and when we talk about how to make the veal and things like that. It was what I saw when I was a kid. My aunts and the aunts of my mother. The gestures of the women around when you are a child. What else are you looking at? What they do, the women. Usually, the man isn’t there. The man is working. And you have the woman, if it was a mother, or maid, or aunt, someone taking care of you as a child, 99 percent of the time it’s a woman. And you do things all the time. As a child, it is something you look at. So it’s really a film that was inscribed in me from my childhood.
I don’t make a distinction between directing and criticism. When I began to look at pictures, that was already part of moviemaking. If I go to see the last Hal Hartley picture, that’s part of making a movie, too. There is no difference. I am part of filmmaking and I must continue to look at what is going on. [With] American picture[s], more or less one every year is enough: they are more or less all the same. But it’s a part of seeing this is the world we are living in.
Rolling Stone: You’ve quoted Pudovkin to the effect that editing is the only original and unique art form in film.
Stanley Kubrick: I think so. Everything else comes from something else. Writing, of course, is writing, acting comes from the theater, and cinematography comes from photography. Editing is unique to film. You can see something from different points of view almost simultaneously, and it creates a new experience.
Pudovkin gives an example: You see a guy hanging a picture on the wall. Suddenly you see his feet slip; you see the chair move; you see his hand go down and the picture fall off the wall. In that split second, a guy falls off a chair, and you see it in a way that you could not see it any other way except through editing.