on life, music etc beyond mainstream

2018 9 Dez

24 pieces of advice, not only for filmmakers

von: Martina Weber Filed under: Blog | TB | Tags:  | 14 Comments



On the back cover of Paul Cronin´s book of conversations with Werner Herzog Werner Herzog – A Guide for the Perplexed one can find this amazing list which might be helpful in various situations.


Always take the initiative. There is nothing wrong with spending a night in jail if it means getting the shot you need. Send out all your dogs and one might return with prey. Never wallow in your troubles; despair must be kept private and brief. Learn to live with your mistakes. Expand your knowledge and understanding of music and literature, old and modern. That roll of unexposed celluloid you have in your hand might be the last in existence, so do something impressive with it. There is never an excuse not to finish a film. Carry bolt cutters everywhere. Thwart institutional cowardice. Ask for forgiveness, not permission. Take your fate into your own hands. Learn to read the inner essence of a landscape. Ignite the fire within and explore unknown territory. Walk straight ahead, never detour. Manoeuvre and mislead, but always deliver. Don’t be fearful of rejection. Develop your own voice. Day one is the point of no return. A badge of honor is to fail a film theory class. Chance is the lifeblood of cinema. Guerrilla tactics are best. Take revenge if need be. Get used to the bear behind you.

This entry was posted on Sonntag, 9. Dezember 2018 and is filed under "Blog". You can follow any responses to this entry with RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


  1. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Strong suggestion: these sentences are quotes from Werner Herzog who prefers the sensual over the sober way of thinking.

  2. Jochen:

    I love that cover text, thanks Martina.

    „Never wallow in your troubles; despair must be kept private and brief.“

  3. Michael Engelbrecht:

    I slightly disagree with Joey‘s appreciation: if despair is kept private and brief, it often leads to depression and suicide. The SHARING of one‘s despair doesn‘t imply wallowing on the other side, but, well, sharing …

    It‘s the starting point of opening up instead of „closing time“. Maybe the phrase was said in a different context, but what fucking context can that be?

  4. Jochen:

    Well, there is this „storm in a tea cup“ aspect …

    Never walked to Paris through snow – but when I return from a 30 miles bike tour, 70 percent of my troubles simply vanished.

  5. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Right, in the end it all comes down to the scope of application. And the meaning of words.

    So there will be good examples for both sides. But, hey, you cannot
    heal DESPAIR with a ride on a bicycle.

    It‘s a bit the problem with a part of such aphoristic statements. And some of the Herzog phrases are just funny. Like good ideas for a dialogue in a movie. And some are simply not so good.

  6. Martina Weber:

    Just back from my bicycle ride: Erstaunlich, was sich alles aus einer Fata Morgana entwickeln kann.

  7. Uli Koch:

    Just think it’s that kind of provocation Werner Herzog often uses and obviously loves but please see the subtitle: these are probably advices for the perplexed! And OK, a bike tour can reduce the feeling of beeing troubled, but please take care of the 30 percent which are still there afterwards.

    All those advices seem to have a different value according to your momentary aims and personality type. Werner Herzog proves that best and honestly I really love the results but would never approach to walk in his footsteps …

  8. Lajla:

    Jochen, du musst dein Radfahren ändern:

    Bei 42,8 Meilen bist du 100% deiner Probleme los :)

  9. Jochen:

    Haha, Lajla – ich arbeite dran … :)

    (bei Regenwetter wird´s schwierig)

  10. Martina Weber:

    Was, du kneifst bei Regen, Jochen? Das ist nicht dein Ernst. Es macht doch am meisten Spaß, wenn die Sonntagsnachmittagsradler zu Hause bleiben :)

  11. Jochen:

    Wohl war, Martina.

    (25th piece of advice: bei jedem Wetter Fahrrad fahren!)

  12. Jan Reetze:

    „Day one is the point of no return“ gefällt mir.

  13. Michael Engelbrecht:

    The book is regarded as a real treasure grove, and knowing Herzog enough from films and interviews I‘m sure it is. A shame it got no German translation.

  14. Martina Weber:

    Das ist bestimmt nur eine Frage der Zeit.

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