Cinema is poetry, music: Werner Herzog

Thiruvananthapuram: Renowned German New Wave director Werner Herzog today said cinema was equivalent to poetry and music and was beyond the technological mode.

Addressing a meet-the-press programme in Thiruvananthapuram, Herzog said that he had always advised young directors in Germany to go after substance and poetry.

"Technological side is secondary. You should have the courage to follow your dreams and be a poet of the century, I have always told them," he said.

"I have been known as a person who had characterised insane persons. But I can count myself as the only person clinically sane," he said.

"I had left my country several times but never left my films and its roots. I feel myself as an athlete of cinema rather than an artiste. I grew up in a remote area and built myself by doing ordinary jobs," Herzog said.

An extraordinary film-maker in German Cinema, Herzog, who was presented with the award for outstanding contribution at the inaugural of the ongoing International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK), said he did not want to categorise his movies into documentaries or features, but as films.

Herzog`s reliance on the surreal atmosphere to tell his story is fully displayed in Even Dwarfs Started Small in 1970, a cast of dwarfs who are in confrontation with the world that is totally out of proportion with their requirements.

Other films screened today included Syndromes and a Century by Thailand director Apachitong and Somewhere by US director Sofia Coppola.

Don`t be afraid (Germany) by Alerun Goette, Angel on the Right Shoulder by Djamshed Usmanov from Tajikistan was also shown this morning.