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What does Stanley Kubrick’s average recording length say about his films?

Stanley Kubrick is a perfectionist, especially when it comes to shot length.

The legend of Kubrick grows every year. It feels like the more we analyze him, the closer we get to understanding how his genius worked. Kubrick is surrounded by a myth that keeps bringing me back to his work.

A recent tweet from Vashi Nedomansky went into the details of Kubrick’s recording length in some of his films. Other directors were mentioned in the tweet, and we’ll be looking at each director individually, but this article is obviously focused on Kubrick.

So what can we read from the recording length in Kubrick’s films?

There is a caveat. Kubrick’s work began at a time when Hollywood was focusing on longer takes and fewer cuts. His films went through so many decades and eras that these ideas changed. I think the best way to look at them is to think about the intent behind the film and also the era in which it was shot.

Let’s take a closer look.


Recognition: Vashi Nedomansky

On the longer side, we have Kubrick’s two permanent masterpieces. Lolita is older, which can affect the length, but it’s also a film about perversion and voyeurism. It has that in common with Eyes wide closed, that was Kubrick’s last film and was shot in modern times. Everyone has conscious characters who recreate people.

There are also contemplative films in the high-end segment. 2001 and Barry Lyndon Cover broad topics, and a slower editing tempo feels perfect for the intentions of the films.

None of Kubrick’s lists contain anything that is quick to work or really quick. That didn’t surprise me Dr. Strange love ranked as the one with the fastest edits, as the snappy dialogues and cutaways in this movie are likely to affect the recording time.

Since most of Kubrick’s titles are epic in quality, I’m not surprised that the mid-range films still have a slower editing rate. The glow and Full metal jacket a camera work that immerses us in the world of the characters, but also shows us what it is like to be these characters. Whether trapped in Vietnam or trapped in a haunted hotel, they let the camera slide slowly and carefully through the scenes.

What Are Some Of The Greatest Takeaways For You?

Let me know in the comments.

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