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Quotes regarding Film - Cinema, Movies, Motion pictures - and film makers.


  • 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.
    • Who: Jean-Luc Godard, Quoted in Richard Roud, Godard, introduction (1970)
  • Photography is truth. The cinema is truth twenty-four times per second.
    • [variation] Cinema is truth at twenty-four frames a second
    • Who: Jean-Luc Godard, Le Petit Soldat (film) (direction and screenplay, 1960)
  • A film is a ribbon of dreams. The camera is much more than a recording apparatus; it is a medium via which messages reach us from another world that is not ours and that brings us to the heart of a great secret. Here magic begins.
    • Who: Orson Welles
  • "A film is a petrified fountain of thought." ~ Jean Cocteau
    • Esquire, (Feb. 1961)
  • Photography because of its causal relationship to the world seems to give us the truth or something close to the truth. I am skeptical about this for many reasons. But even if photography doesn't give us truth on a silver-platter, it can make it harder for us to deny reality. It puts a leash on fantasy, confabulation and self-deception. It provides constraints, borders. It circumscribes our ability to lie — to ourselves and to others.
  • I always say a screenplay is the big plain pizza, the one with tomatoes and cheese. And then the director comes and says, “You know, it needs some mushrooms.” And you go, “Put mushrooms on it.” And then the costume designer throws peppers on it, and – and pretty soon, you have a pizza with everything on it. And sometimes it’s the greatest pizza of your life and sometimes you think, “Well, that was a mistake. We should have left it with only the mushrooms.”
  • The public has lost the habit of movie-going because the cinema no longer possesses the charm, the hypnotic charisma, the authority it once commanded. The image it once held for us all, that of a dream we dreamt with our eyes open, has disappeared. Is it still possible that one thousand people might group together in the dark and experience the dream that a single individual has directed?
  • A good opening and a good ending make for a good film provide they come close together.
  • I've always used it to describe lazy people, not lazy black people! I think if we really tried, we could re-claim porch monkey, and save it.
  • "American motion pictures are written by the half-educated for the half-witted." ~ St. John Ervine
    • Ney York Mirror(June 6, 1963)
  • "A wide screen just makes a bad film twice as bad." ~ Samuel Goldwyn
    • Quote (Sept. 9, 1956)
  • "There is only one thing that can kill the movies, and that is education." ~ Will Rogers
    • The Autobiography of Will Rogers (1949)
  • "A film is a boat which is always on the point of sinking - it always tends to break up as you go along and drag you under with it." ~ Francois Truffaut
    • interview in Peter Graham's The New Wave (1968)
  • Cinema is an old whore, like circus and variety, who knows how to give many kinds of pleasure. ~ Federico Fellini,
    • Atlantic Dec 1965
  • Well, Jack Warner may have been celebrated for calling writers "Schmucks with Underwoods," but 20 years earlier, Irving Thalberg … said, "The most important person in the motion picture process is the writer, and we must do everything in our power to prevent them from ever realizing it."
  • "I honestly don't understand the big fuss made over nudity and sex in films. It's silly. On TV, the children can watch people murdering each other, which is a very unnatural thing, but they can't watch two people in the very natural process of making love. Now, really, that doesn't make any sense, does it?" --Sharon Tate
    • Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders (2000) by Greg King
  • If you want to do a film, steal a camera, steal raw stock, sneak into a lab and do it! ~ Werner Herzog
    • Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (1980).
  • Film is not the art of scholars, but illiterates. -- Werner Herzog
    • Herzog on Herzog
  • As you see [filmmaking] makes me into a clown. And that happens to everyone – just look at Orson Wells or look at even people like Truffaut. They have become clowns. ~ Werner Herzog
    • Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (1980).

  • A script only dies when the producer stops working on it - Daniel Grodnik
  • I like to work with first time directors as long as it's their second picture. - Daniel Grodnik


  • American capitalism finds its sharpest and most expressive reflection in the American cinema. — Sergei Eisenstein
  • "No one ever went broke in Hollywood underestimating the intelligence of the public." ~ Elsa Maxwell
  • "There's no crying in independent film." ~ Robert Redford, (Tanner on Tanner episode 1)
  • A good film is when the price of the dinner, the theatre admission and the babysitter were worth it.
    Variation: A good film is when the price of the admission, the dinner and the babysitter was well worth it. ~ Alfred Hitchcock
  • "Cinema has evolved in two paths. One is spectacle. Like the phantasmagoria, its goal is the creation of a total substitute sensory world. The other is peep show, which claims for its realm both the erotic and the untampered observance of real life, and imitates the keyhole or voyeur's window without need of color, noise, grandeur." ~ Jim Morrison
  • "Most of us do not consciously look at movies." ~ Roger Ebert
  • "Every great film should seem new every time you see it." ~ Roger Ebert
  • "No good movie is too long and no bad movie is short enough." ~ Roger Ebert
  • "No good movie is depressing; all bad movies are depressing" ~ Roger Ebert
  • "There are two things you can't argue in film: comedy and eroticism. If something doesn't make you laugh, no one can tell you why it's funny, and it's difficult to reason someone out of an erection." ~ Roger Ebert
  • The grass isn't greener, it's dead. Producer, Daniel Grodnik

See also

Film directors
Quotes about Television

External links

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Look up film in Wiktionary, the free dictionary

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