We can never run away from our past. The past will catch up to us because it is us. It is a part of us; it's what makes us we are. It's what delineates the borders of our societies.
You see, 'The Look of Silence' is the first film ever made where survivors confront perpetrators who still hold a monopoly on power. It's normally never done because it is too dangerous.
I heard about the Holocaust before hearing the 'Cinderella' story or watching 'Peter Pan.'
The function of journalism is, primarily, to uncover vital new information in the public interest and to put that information in a context so that we can use it to improve the human condition.
I think, if you're in the United States, we've seen people trying to speak out in different ways and trying to make themselves heard about the United States' failure to move on generationally, given the long-festering wound of our history around race.
No one forgets the presence of the camera, no matter how long it's there.
At our production company, the trademark dish - and this sounds particularly revolting - is curried pickled herring.
I think that indignation is pleasurable, and it's pleasurable because it's self-righteous.
If you acknowledge that filming is an occasion where people express things they might not otherwise express, that offers a much more insightful analysis of why documentaries - even of the fly-on-the-wall variety - are powerful.
Military rule in Indonesia formally ended in 1998, but the army remains above the law.
You cry the first tear because something is genuinely, singularly upsetting. And you cry the second tear because everybody is crying that first tear with you, and you know that.
I went looking for embodiments of pure evil, but found ordinary people.
For my part, as a filmmaker, I've never been a fly-on-the-wall documentarian. I have no commitment to that method. I believe it's a lie.
If we don't accept the uncomfortable proposition that every perpetrator of virtually every act of evil in our history has been a human being like us, then we actually foreclose the possibility of understanding how we do this to one another and therefore make it impossible to figure out how we might prevent these things.
Cinema is, of course, the great storytelling medium of modernity.
I think it's our obligation as filmmakers, as people investigating the world, to create the reality that is most insightful to the issues at hand. Here are human beings, like us, boasting about atrocities that should be unimaginable.
Waking from any fever dream, one retains, above all, impressions seared into memory.
I have a British and an American passport.
I didn't really get any rigorous background in film history.
At Harvard, direct cinema was the core of the film department, and most of the students were trying to make socially conscious works, but I was trying to combine fiction and non-fiction to show how our seemingly factual world is constituted through fantasy and stories.