We’ve sourced some of the most interesting and thought-provoking Walter Murch Quotes. Each of the following quotes is overflowing with creativity, and knowledge.
I think every age has a medium that talks to it more eloquently than the others. In the 19th century it was symphonic music and the novel. For various technical and artistic reasons, film became that eloquent medium for the 20th century.
If you want to freak your cat out, stare at your cat. If you want to reassure your cat, stare at your cat, then very deliberately and very slowly blink. Like that. The cat will also deliberately, slowly blink back at you, and I almost guarantee that she will start to purr. That’s a feline reassurance.
There’s a big link between trains and film. One of the first filmed objects was a train. The clickety-clack of the projector and the clickety-clack of the train are similar. There is the idea of the voyage – every voyage is a story. I wonder if film would have been invented without the train.
The word processor is a better tool than a quill pen because you can do so much more with it, but on the other hand, what you have to say and how you say it is the ultimate determination.
You can always make a film somehow. You can beg, borrow, steal the equipment, use credit cards, use your friends’ goodwill, wheedle your way into this or that situation. The real problem is, how do you get people to see it once it is made?
I was greatly influenced by musique concrete when I was, like, 10. I was completely mesmerized by the idea that you could make music out of sounds. So that’s been a constant influence on all my work.
Take any writer you want in the 19th century: they wrote with quill pens, dipping a piece of goose feather in ink and writing. And yet we read those novels today, and if we’re sensitive to them, we respond to them with an immediacy that is stronger than anything written today on a word processor.
‘The Conversation’ was the first film I edited on a flatbed machine – a KEM editing machine. I’ve been using Final Cut or the AVID for 12 years now, so I was interested in looking at this film and seeing if I could tell if it had been edited the old way.
This applies to many film jobs, not just editing: half the job is doing the job, and the other half is finding ways to get along with people and tuning yourself in to the delicacy of the situation.
Every film is a puzzle really, from an editorial point of view.
Film is really the one art form that can effectively use silence. Music and theater can play with silence, but they can’t sustain silence without losing energy, whereas film can go into a silent mode and stay there for minutes at a time.
I believe that one of the secret engines that allows cinema to work, and have the marvelous power over us that it does, is the fact that for thousands of years we have spent eight hours every night in a ‘cinematic’ dream-state, and so are familiar with this version of reality.
Sound is a huge influence on peoples’ attention.