The Movie Buffer

Friday, October 14, 2005

Length equates to Oscars?

So I was trolling through some past academy awards listings and the first Oscar winner in 1927-28 was 141 minutes. Classics that won the Oscar like "All Quiet on the Western Front", "Gone with the Wind", "Casablanca", "The Bridge on the River Kwai" etc all push the 2 hour mark and more. The stand out I found was "on the Waterfront" which is only 108 minutes. Recently films like "Gladiator" and "Lord of the Rings" are blessed with an Oscar. The thought occurs that length translates into Academy awards.

The obvious benefit to a longer film winning is because there is more room for development of characters, mood and story. Furthermore, longer films have larger budgets so they can afford to get more popular/talented actors. These are both great additions to a flick but a long film can easily become a pretentious opus or a tacky, visual effect abortion.

What ever happened to the 100 minute movie? There is something to be said for a filmmaker that can start a story and finish it in less than 2 hours. The only movies that are in this time frame are animated, independent and some foreign film. I'm not saying that Hollywood doesn't produce these movies anymore; I'm saying that these movies from Hollywood aren't good.

Films like "Ghostbusters", "Final Cut", and "Searching for Bobby Fischer" are a dying breed and I will miss the days where I could walk into a theatre and not spend the entire night there.


  • You're forgetting ALADDIN 2: THE SOMETHINGEROTHER which scored in at 40 minutes.

    By Blogger Malfarious J, at 11:14 PM  

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