STAVROS  TORNES


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I would hope for Greek cinema that it rediscovers what silent film has left us:  its clearness and its strength.

...despite their low budget, my films are not meant to be weak. What counts is the creative element, not the means.

I don't think it is because of my films that people are prevented to go and see them. It is the mechanism. There should be some commercial structure which doesn't look down on 10.000 tickets.

If you are not interested in cinema as an art, then why bother? To realize the simple desire of the people to be photographed? But, anyone can do that.

In the world of Greek cinema there is a lot of passion, a lot of enthousiasm, but there is little love. With more love it would be possible to reduce the negative conditions which always occur in the process of flm-making. As things are, anyone may kick the stool you're sitting on, so you fall and won't ever get up. But is that what we're afraid of?

As for me, let them pull down my stool again and again, sooner or later with a piece of celluloid, I would make my film anyway. It is depressing though when people of cinema become obsessed with thesis, difficult conditions, which may be somehow true, but it cannot be their truth. So where is their truth?

 

S.Giannoulis-S.Tornes "A Heron...." 1987Korinthos 1987. S.Tornes-M.KaramanisS. Tornes as a "Poet  Polydor", 1987 "A HERON FOR GERMANY"

The cinema was and is the place where another kind of freedom is expressed, another way of life. And today there is a new look to it, which I would call authentic satisfaction. The element of satisfaction has ofcourse always been part of the cinema, but now adays we rediscover it in a more powerful way. And where are these powers hidden? Well, in the fact that closed commercial circles (like TV) offer a cold and sterilized image ready for consumption, where the cinema can offer satisfaction. This ritual of being with others in a dark theater, watching together, being fascinated by the largeness of the image, nothing can replace this.

How will a film meet it's audience? Well, by showing some interesting ideas. A film-maker cannot remain indifferent to the fact that people no longer care for cinema. I like it when young people are curious about my work -they laugh, they wonder they discuss. This is what interests me, and not some vague and general return of the people to the cinema's. I don't make films to become rich or to collect tickets, but to enjoy myself. But ofcourse I have to consider this whole web of connections which regard film-distribution. A film has to be attractive to circulate. With this I don't mean to say that a film should conform to certain rules or should be made in a certain way so as to be likeable A film has to disturb you, to be adainst you. It is the duty of a film to disturb you, to be against you, to exceed your standard measures. Sameness is death.

May be the reaction of the audience at Saloniki Festival is putting us to a test. Though I absolutely denie self-criticism (you make the film for yourself, and after that you don't care) I cannot denie that the situation at the festival makes me think. You try to reach the other, and the other doesn't want you. But as far as you exist with your film in this negative encounter, whether you feel humiliated or you are once more confronted with yourself, it is a refreshing trial. So, though I don't wish people to shout and fight, I still prefer a good fight to concealed indifference.

Cinema that is us and our films. Without them we are nothing. Festivals don't make cinema.They are there because of the cinema's weakness. Still, they are interesting. People compete and get excited, be it in a negative way. They are confronted wwith a tough, often cannibalistic audience. They think and see what they are worth in a negative social reality.

 

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