Leni Riefenstahl Quotes

Being sorry isn’t nearly enough, but I can’t tear myself apart or destroy myself. It’s so terrible. I’ve suffered anyway for over half a century and it will never end, until I die. It’s such an incredible burden, that to say ‘sorry’… it’s inadequate, it expresses too little.

I am fascinated by what is beautiful, strong, healthy, what is living. I seek harmony.

I can simply say that I feel spontaneously attracted by everything that is beautiful… It comes from the unconscious and not from my knowledge… Whatever is purely realistic, slice of life, which is average, quotidian. Doesn’t interest me…

I feel as though I have lived many lives, experienced the heights and depths of each and like the waves of the ocean, never known rest. Throughout the years, I have looked always for the unusual, for the wonderful, for the mysteries at the heart of life.

I filmed the truth as it was then. Nothing more.

I set about seeking a thread, a theme, a style, in the realm of legend. Something that might allow me to give free rein to my juvenile sense of romanticism and the beautiful image.

I told Hitler that filming the party congress was too difficult for a girl. I told him the men are jealous and the problems I encountered affected my nerves. Hitler became very angry. He told Goebbels that when he gave an order, Goebbels was supposed to obey it. Hitler then told me that I must make a film of the congress in 1934 but I protested, saying that the same thing would happen. He… assured me that there would be no interference.

I want to see, that’s all. This is my life. I want to see.

I was never Hitler’s mistress – although I was dazzled by him. These are nothing but lies. It is senseless to call me the queen of the Nazis. I have never spoken a word about politics. It is all lies and forgeries. If I had really been a Nazi I would have killed myself, like Eva Braun. I have never said that Hitler was handsome and intelligent. I am not an idiot. I have never seen mass executions and I have never seen a concentration camp.

If I, as so many other colleagues, would have worked for the sake of money, I could have become a millionaire. But money was of no importance to me. I worked on a film for years until I thought it artistically perfected. I was my own boss, nobody could tell me what to do. Had I ever had the impression that my freedom as a creative artist would be limited, I would have gone abroad.

‘Mein Kampf’ made a tremendous impression on me. I became a confirmed National Socialist after reading the first page. I felt a man who could write such a book would undoubtedly lead Germany. I felt very happy that such a man had come.

Reality doesn’t interest me.

Really, if I start a work I forget food. I forget that I am a woman. I forget my dress, I only see my work. I forget because I am fascinated by my work.

The applause was so loud and insistent that I had to respond with several encores. I was numb with happiness, when it was over, I knew that this alone must be my life and my world.

Through my optimism I naturally prefer and capture the beauty in life.

To me Hitler is the greatest man who ever lived. He is really faultless, so simple yet so filled with manly power… He is really beautiful, he is wise. Radiance streams from him. All the great men of Germany – Friedrich, Nietzsche, Bismarck – have all had faults. Hitler’s followers are not spotless. Only he is pure.

With body and soul I would have preferred to remain a dancer. Of all the things I have done in my life as an artist, dance made me the happiest and fascinated me the most.