“The whole thing about making films in an organic film location is that it's not all about characters, relationships and themes, it's also about place and the poetry of place. It's about the spirit of what you find, the accidents of what you stumble across”
[on the making of "Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly"] "Although most foreigners didn’t quite catch the cultural references or understand the background (Indonesian social history), many understood and identified with the overall feeling of alienation. And that’s important to me: when the film is liberated from having to explain any facts or history or background, it independently expresses a strong feeling of confusion, unease, restlessness and even fear."
“My work centers essentially on the idea of the portrait, that is to pick an individual and try to picture his or her inner landscape – one could almost call it the inner space. And the discontinued narrative helps me to approach it.”
“But in all, I don't like to engage in telling stories. I don't like to arouse the viewer emotionally or give him advice. I don't like to belittle him or burden him with a sense of guilt. These are the things I don't like in the movies.”
“I think cinema has to deal with desire. In the cinema, you are with a big screen, it is dark, and you watch some images, like a fantasy, so I think it is important for you to feel desire for what you see.”
“I believe you have to be born a director. It’s like a child’s adventure: you take the initiative among other children and become a director, creating a mystery. You mould things into shape and create.”