Shortening elements of our life
Short form content has never enjoyed much mainstream approval. For many, this medium is bogged down by an ‘art cinema’ air of intellectual snobbery and unnecessary highbrow attitude. This has traditionally lead to short films and projects to be isolated to fringe festivals and small cinemas.
The thing is, what matters for mass acceptance is entertainment value. The truth is, a large chunk of the viewing audience is not interested in seeing pictures for their award value or critical acclaim. They want entertainment and for many years, this did not include short form content in general.
In recent years, however, there has been an interesting trend concerning short form content; mainstream acceptance. This medium has transformed from the cigar lounge anecdote of the past to an edgy new tool to reach those who previously had no interest in this.
Looking at the trends and events of the recent past it becomes easy to see why. Our lives have become reduced to snippets of interest with many things trying to get our attention. Advertising has become smarter to engage us beyond the past model, written content has minimised to short form posts and snippets and a 140 character limit. And so, it is only fitting that the film and series has followed suit.
Although the artistic merits of the webisodes and movie-in-a-minute type content can be discussed and critiqued by the highbrow gatekeepers of the days past, the social merits are obvious and the benefits have proven lucrative. Any filmmaker who is able to engage this new and hungry audience with a mirror of the world they live in by reducing the length of their content to fit into our crazy lives.
There is always an ebb and flow when it comes to trends and the attention short form content is enjoying now might soon be gone. But until then, it is best to enjoy the (short) ride.
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