Making Movies: Blurbified

Just finished a second read-through of Lumet's book, and I figured I'd share some favorite quotes:

"I don't know what my life is about and don't examine it. My life will define itself as I live it."

"We're not out for consensus here. We're out for communication. And sometimes we even get consensus. And that's thrilling."

"[When directing films] I'm in charge of a community that I need desperately and that needs me just as badly. That's where the joy lies, in the shared experience."

"I don't mind limitations. Sometimes they even stimulate you to better, more imaginative work."

"Do mountains of preparation kill spontaneity? Absolutely not. I've found that it's just the opposite. When you know what you're doing, you feel much freer to improvise."

"The script must still keep you off balance, keep you surprised, entertained, involved, and yet, when the denouement is reached, still give you the sense that the story had to turn out that way."

"Dialogue is like anything else in movies. It can be a crutch, or when used well, it can enhance, deepen, and reveal."

"Someone once asked me what making a movie was like. I said it was like a mosaic... if you expect the final mosaic to look like anything, you 'd better know what you're going for as you work on each tiny tile."

"Good camera work is not pretty pictures. It should augment and reveal the theme as fully as the actors and directors do."

"I'm talking about self-deception. In any creative effort, I think that's absolutely necessary. Creative work is very hard, and some sort of self-deception is necessary simply in order to begin... I think most of us feel like fakes. At some point 'they' will get onto us and expose us for what we are: know-nothings, hustlers, and charlatans. It's not a totally destructive feeling. It tends to keep us honest."


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