On the question of whether Haneke would make a film about Hitler: There is a question of responsibility … first and foremost to your viewers, your audience. Responsibility entails enabling your audience to remain independent and free of manipulation. The question is how seriously do I take my viewer, to what extent do I provide him with the opportunity of creating his own opinion…
“If I were to explain things myself and offer an interpretation [of my films] then this would automatically reduce the spectator’s ability to find their own answers. My films are offerings, I invite the audience to deal with them, think about them and reflect upon them and, ultimately, to find their own answers. I also think that an author doesn’t always necessarily know what he intends and what the meaning is behind his work. For example, I am always amazed by the many theses and books I read about myself, all of which reveal what I supposedly wanted to express in my films or was supposed to have dealt with. I strongly believe it would be very counterproductive for the audience if I were to answer the questions I am raising in my films, because then no one would have to think about them.”
I’m lucky enough to be able to make films, and so I don’t need a psychiatrist. I can sort out my fears and all those things with my work. That’s an enormous privilege. That’s the privilege of all artists; to be able to sort out their unhappiness and their neuroses in order to create something.
I’m lucky enough to be able to make films and so I don’t need a psychiatrist. I can sort out my fears and all those things with my work. That’s an enormous privilege. That’s the privilege of all artists, to be able to sort out their unhappiness and their neuroses in order to create something. -Michael Haneke
“There was a relative I loved very much, and I had to look on as she suffered,” the 70-year-old Haneke explains, recalling an aunt who suffered from rheumatism and ended up taking her own life. “I wanted to investigate this feeling of being able to do nothing about it.”