The thing about the sketch approach is that you’re working on being both loose and rigorous at the same time. You’re leaving room for chance, for un-self-consciousness, while concentrating on improving a particular form or thought or sentence. For me, the thinking and rigor have always come more easily than the letting go. So I’m basically thrilled when I catch a glimpse of the unplanned peeping through. But in the end, it is a balance I’m after.
Chance for chance’s sake – just like expression for expression’s sake – bores me. I find it shallow, narrow. It is therapeutic, for sure, but it’s also self-indulgent if the work you’re making is for public viewing. Like Munch’s Scream: I’m not into it. Although I get where it comes from. Pierrot Le Fou, however, I love (the film had no screenplay).
So rigor is key for me. Another word for rigor might be boundary. Yes, everyone has a different definition of boundary.
All this to say that I enjoyed this quote in Anthony Lane’s portrait of filmmaker Michael Haneke (his films are most unenjoyable however) in this week’s New Yorker.
One tries to re-create the complexity of life, but in a completely orderly way. I don’t believe in chance during shooting. Chance is a gift of the moment, if that exists, but it’s an exception. You have to prepare a chance for an actor, for instance, and push him into a certain situation. But I don’t at all believe in the improvisational method.