gordon willis cinematography


Looper (2012) - Rian Johnson.

My memory’s cloudy. It’s a cloud. Because my memories aren’t really memories. They’re just one possible eventuality now. And they grow clearer or cloudier as they become more or less likely. But then they get to the present moment, and they’re instantly clear again. I can remember what you do after you do it. And it hurts.


“We’re in a business where people perceive complexity as good. It’s not good. Complexity is not good. People don’t understand the elegance of simplicity. There are very few people left that do understand it. The whole idea is to take a sophisticated idea and reduce it to the simplest possible terms so that it’s accessible to everybody – and don’t get simple mixed up with simplistic. It’s how you mount and present something that makes it engaging…Simplistic is doing it badly…simple is your choices.”

— Gordon Willis on the simplicity of cinematography

Don’t you just love this shot reverse shot sequence in Manhattan?

Stills from Manhattan (1979, dir. Woody Allen) CInematography by Gordon Willis