Werner Herzog-sitater.

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Werner Herzog fotografert i Brüssel av Flickr user «erinc salor» (http://www.flickr.com/photos/espressoroast/) CC BY-SA 2.0 / Wikicommons.

Det kan aldri være helt feil å servere et knippe Werner Herzog-sitater.

Aller først, hans karakteristikk av jungelen i Amazonas, som… «shatters the weak and the strong with equal ferocity»:

«To be more precise: bird cries, for in this setting, left unfinished and abandoned by God in wrath, the birds do not sing; they shriek in pain, and confused trees tangle with one another like battling Titans, from horizon to horizon, in a steaming creation still being formed. Fog-panting and exhausted they stand in this unreal misery – and I, like a stanza in a poem written in an unknown foreign tongue, am shaken to the core.»

Her følger flere gullkorn, og forsøk å høre for deg Herzogs kvernende stemme og utpregete aksent når du leser dette. Enjoy! Om dét nå er ordet… (Se også: «De kjæreste fiender»)

«There is nothing wrong with hardships and obstacles, but everything wrong with not trying.»

«Three things — a phone, computer and car — are all you need to produce films.»

«The best advice I can offer to those heading into the world of film is not to wait for the system to finance your projects and for others to decide your fate.»

«Filmmaking — like great literature — must have experience of life at its foundation.»


«The circumstances of funding never just appear; you have to create them yourself, then manipulate them for your own ends. This is the very nature and daily toil of filmmaking. If your project has real substance, ultimately the money will follow you like a common cur in the street with its tail between its legs. There is a German proverb: “Der Teufel scheisst immer auf den grössten Haufen” [“The Devil always shits on the biggest heap”]. So start heaping and have faith. Every time you make a film you should be prepared to descend into Hell and wrestle it from the claws of the Devil himself. Prepare yourself: there is never a day without a sucker punch.»

«Perseverance has kept me going over the years. Things rarely happen overnight. Filmmakers should be prepared for many years of hard work. The sheer toil can be healthy and exhilarating.»

«What makes me rich is that I am welcomed almost everywhere. I can show up with my films and am offered hospitality, something you could never achieve with money alone… For years I have struggled harder than you can imagine for true liberty, and today am privileged in the way the boss of a huge corporation never will be.»

«I find the notion of happiness rather strange… It has never been a goal of mine; I just don’t think in those terms.»

«The problem isn’t coming up with ideas, it is how to contain the invasion. My ideas are like uninvited guests. They don’t knock on the door; they climb in through the windows like burglars who show up in the middle of the night and make a racket in the kitchen as they raid the fridge. I don’t sit and ponder which one I should deal with first. The one to be wrestled to the floor before all others is the one coming at me with the most vehemence.»

«When I write, I sit in front of the computer and pound the keys. I start at the beginning and write fast, leaving out anything that isn’t necessary, aiming at all times for the hard core of the narrative. I can’t write without that urgency. Something is wrong if it takes more than five days to finish a screenplay. A story created this way will always be full of life.»

«I don’t consciously reflect on aesthetics before making a film because, for me, the story always dictates such things. Of course, aesthetics do sometimes enter unconsciously through the back door, because whether we like it or not our preferences always somehow influence the decisions we make.»

«I work best under pressure, knee-deep in the mud. It helps me concentrate. The truth is I have never been guided by the kind of strict discipline I see in some people, those who get up at five in the morning and jog for an hour.»

«What would an ocean be without a monster lurking in the dark? It would be like sleep without dreams.»

«Facts do not convey truth. That’s a mistake. Facts create norms, but truth creates illumination.»

«If you truly love film, I think the healthiest thing to do is not read books on the subject. I prefer the glossy film magazines with their big color photos and gossip columns, or the National Enquirer. Such vulgarity is healthy and safe.»

«Look into the eyes of a chicken and you will see real stupidity. It is a kind of bottomless stupidity, a fiendish stupidity. They are the most horrifying, cannibalistic and nightmarish creatures in the world.»

«I believe the common denominator of the universe is not harmony; but chaos, hostility and murder.»

«If you’re purely after facts, please buy yourself the phone directory of Manhattan. It has four million times correct facts. But it doesn’t illuminate.»

«Someone like Jean-Luc Godard is for me intellectual counterfeit money when compared to a good kung fu film.»

«Your film is like your children. You might want a child with certain qualities, but you are never going to get the exact specification right. The film has a privilege to live its own life and develop its own character. To suppress this is dangerous. It is an approach that works the other way too: sometimes the footage has amazing qualities that you did not expect.»

«Civilization is like a thin layer of ice upon a deep ocean of chaos and darkness.»

«I think there should be holy war against yoga classes.»

«Every man should pull a boat over a mountain once in his life.»

«The universe is monstrously indifferent to the presence of man.»

«I think the worst that can happen in filmmaking is if you’re working with a storyboard. That kills all intuition, all fantasy, all creativity.»

«I think psychology and self-reflection is one of the major catastrophes of the twentieth century.»

«Ambition is to be the fastest runner on this planet, to be the first on the South Pole, which is a grotesque perversion of ambition. It’s an ego trip, and I’m not on an ego trip. I don’t have ambitions – I have a vision.»