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date: 03 March 2024

The Cinema 

see also Actors, Films
  1. joe gillis: You used to be in pictures. You used to be big.
    norma desmond: I am big. It's the pictures that got small.
    Charles Brackett 1892–1969 and Billy Wilder 1906–2002 American screenwriters: Sunset Boulevard (1950 film, with D. M. Marshman Jr.)
  2. There are no rules in filmmaking. Only sins. And the cardinal sin is dullness.
    Frank Capra 1897–1991 Italian-born American film director: in People 16 September 1991
  3. If my books had been any worse, I should not have been invited to Hollywood, and if they had been any better, I should not have come.
    Raymond Chandler 1888–1959 American writer of detective fiction: letter to Charles W. Morton, 12 December 1945
  4. Words are cheap. The biggest thing you can say is ‘elephant’.
    on the universality of silent films
    Charlie Chaplin 1889–1977 English film actor and director: B. Norman The Movie Greats (1981)
  5. Never judge a book by its movie.
    J. W. Eagan: attributed; Michael Lent Breakfast with Sharks (2004)
  6. Photography is truth. The cinema is truth 24 times per second.
    Jean-Luc Godard 1930–  French film director: Le Petit Soldat (1960 film)
  7. Ce n'est pas une image juste, c'est juste une image.
    This is not a just image, it is just an image.
    Jean-Luc Godard 1930–  French film director: Colin MacCabe Godard: Images, Sounds, Politics (1980)
  8. georges franju: Movies should have a beginning, a middle and an end.
    jean-luc godard: Certainly, but not necessarily in that order.
    Jean-Luc Godard 1930–  French film director: in Time 14 September 1981; see Aristotle
  9. Nobody knows anything.
    on the film industry
    William Goldman 1931–  American novelist, dramatist, and screenwriter: Adventures in the Screen Trade (1984)
  10. Why should people go out and pay to see bad movies when they can stay at home and see bad television for nothing?
    Sam Goldwyn 1882–1974 American film producer: in Observer 9 September 1956
  11. Pictures are for entertainment, messages should be delivered by Western Union.
    Sam Goldwyn 1882–1974 American film producer: Arthur Marx Goldwyn (1976) ch. 15
  12. What we need is a story that starts with an earthquake and works its way up to a climax.
    Sam Goldwyn 1882–1974 American film producer: attributed, perhaps apocryphal
  13. If I made Cinderella, the audience would immediately be looking for a body in the coach.
    Alfred Hitchcock 1899–1980 British-born film director: in Newsweek 11 June 1956
  14. The words ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’ which I saw on an Italian movie poster, are perhaps the briefest statement imaginable of the basic appeal of movies.
    Pauline Kael 1919–2001 American film critic: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (1968) ‘Note on the Title’
  15. Hollywood money isn't money. It's congealed snow, melts in your hand, and there you are.
    Dorothy Parker 1893–1967 American critic and humorist: Malcolm Cowley Writers at Work 1st Series (1958)
  16. There is only one thing that can kill the movies, and that is education.
    Will Rogers 1879–1935 American actor and humorist: Autobiography of Will Rogers (1949)
  17. The lunatics have taken charge of the asylum.
    on the take-over of United Artists by Charles Chaplin and others
    Richard Rowland c.1881–1947 American film producer: Terry Ramsaye A Million and One Nights (1926) vol. 2, ch. 79
  18. This is the biggest electric train a boy ever had!
    of the RKO studios
    Orson Welles 1915–85 American actor and film director: Roy Fowler Orson Welles (1946) ch. 6
  19. A film is never really good unless the camera is an eye in the head of a poet.
    Orson Welles 1915–85 American actor and film director: ‘Ribbon of Dreams’ in International Film Annual no. 2 (1958)
  20. I wouldn't say when you've seen one Western you've seen the lot; but when you've seen the lot you get the feeling you've seen one.
    Katharine Whitehorn 1928–  English journalist: Sunday Best (1976) ‘Decoding the West’