Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Keep It Shorter. Keep It Shorter. Keep It Shorter.

This weekend, I’m taking my niece and nephew to see Pete’s Dragon. Anyone know how long it is? I need to know what time to pick them up.

Let’s talk about length. Like I did recently with my friend Michael Rutherford, who is a writer/director. Michael wanted to know what I thought about an idea he had to make shorter movies. Not short films, but full-length films that were 45-50 minutes long.

I thought it was a great idea. Why do movies have to be at least 90 minutes long? Because that’s the way they’ve always been done? That’s not a valid reason. Many good things in life evolved for the better because someone finally questioned them. People thought electric guitars would ruin music. Not so much. Apple created computers so simple, they didn’t need user manuals. High-jumpers went face down for years, until Dick Fosbury invented the flop, broke the Olympic record, and no one jumped face-down after that.

After Michael and I talked, I must have had my radar up, because I started seeing that he was on to something. Check out these guys from “What the Flick?!”, as they reviewed an episode of “The Night Of”. Or Jerry Seinfeld, in an interview in Esquire this month about “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee”, said: “The freedom of the Internet was extremely attractive to me. If a movie director or producer was free to put out a movie that lasted for 48 minutes because that’s all they had, movies would be so much better.”

I say go for it, Michael. Make perfect, air-tight movies. Change things for the better.

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