surinenglish

So long, Hollywood

If you don't like watching films, social events can become a bit awkward sometimes, especially if the topic of conversation turns to what is generally considered to be a classic and it's simply understood that everyone present has seen it. Star Wars is the perfect example of this. All I know about that film is that the baddie revealed himself to be the goodie's dad at some point and that, er, well, that's about it actually. Oh, and some people hit each other on the head with giant glow sticks.

As I'm sure you're aware, owing to Hollywood's corporate marketing bulldozer tactics, a new Bladerunner film has just come out - Bladerunner 2049. When I first saw the news I thought that this state of affairs was pretty bad even for me since I hadn't seen a single one of the previous 2048, until I realised my mistake.

Quite a few people of my acquaintance have been to see the film and, out of politeness, I've been asking them for their thoughts hoping, deep down, that they won't actually tell me. Luckily the producers have offered me a lifeline because, without exception, the first thing that anyone replies to my enquiry is short and to the point (unlike the film, apparently).

“It's too long,” they mutter, eyes glazed and brain irrevocably cabbaged. Imagine the time, effort and, presumably, skill that has been poured into Bladerunner 2049 only for the general consensus to be that its most striking characteristic is its inordinate length. Why didn't they employ someone to shorten it, like one of those lads at school who was rubbish at everything except precis because he was so lazy? Give him one thousand words and he could chop 'em down to a hundred and fifty in the blink of an eye because, basically, he didn't like reading.

It's all a bit weird because it's generally acknowledged that our attention spans are getting shorter and yet filmmakers seem to be releasing more and more movies that are three hours long. In the good old days, we all knew where we stood - everything was approximately an hour and a half in duration: films, football matches, arguments with the in-laws, etc. Not now, though, I'm afraid.

Hollywood directors should call someone who really doesn't like watching films to lay waste to the superfluous parts of their blockbuster epics in order to leave them pruned and digestible for the common man.

I'm contactable through the SUR in English offices. Thank you.