January 21st, 2002
Don’t be a passive media consumer, be active!
I saw Orange County today and Jack Black was amazing as usual. Some funny moments, but I find myself thinking much of it could have been left out. There’s only about 35 minutes of good movie lodged in that movie. Some cultural works require the full experience to get the right impact. But for some, you just need some of the bits and pieces. Cliff’s Notes. No, not Cliff’s Notes – more – abridged versions. Maybe this is a function for a future TiVo. Think of how many BAD movies there are on cable. Now consider that maybe some of these 90 minute monstrosities may have a 20 minute short film lurking in them. A short film that’s pretty good even! Or perhaps the businessperson on the go – she has no time to sit through Titanic or Gladiator – how about the 35 minute versions of those? Like a remix! I’m liking this idea more and more. Rap/Hip hop was built by people who took existing music, and cut it up in interesting ways. Spielberg’s A.I. was overlong and manipulative, but maybe there’s a film+video Moby or Brian Eno out there who will recut it in a way that’s interesting. Maybe it’s A.I.: The 30 minute adventure! or A.I.: The Sad 20 Minute Version. There is an antecedent for this, for Star Wars – but that’s full length. I want to see multiple, alternate versions. As more people have powerful desktop video capabilities, I hope we’ll see a recut underground.