Sunday, February 24, 2008

Walter Murch Quote from 'Fine Cuts: The Art of European Film Editing'

Fine Cuts: The Art of European Film Editing
by Roger Crittenden

But the defining craft of cinema - montage - seems to have quickly invented itself in a cocoon of silence, and to have continued that reticence as part of its protective colouration. Perhaps this is due to the personality of film editors themselves, or to the nature of their role as seconds to forceful and articulate directors. Or to the work itself, which most often aspires to burnish the efforts of others and to remain itself unnoticed. Perhaps it is simply priestly discretion: there is something of the confession booth to the editing room, where the omissions and commissions of shooting are whispered and discretely absolved by concealment or alchemically transformed into discoveries. Or maybe it is due to the very lack of deep-rooted tradition: there is not (yet) a rich vocabulary to describe what goes on as moving images mingle and fertilise each other, so we remain mute. Or cryptic: 'Why did you make that cut?' 'I don't know - it just felt right'.

Walter Murch, London, June 2004, Foreword


First of a series of interesting quotes on editing which I've been scribbling down.

Maybe that's one reason why I like editing - because you can get away with 'just because' when asked 'why?' - sometimes, it's just tiring [and impossible] to explain everything. Things can very well be 'they are what they are ' ;]