Posted by: ckckred | April 14, 2013

What Do You Do For Long Movies?

The Criterion Collection is now releasing Shoah on Blu-Ray

The Criterion Collection is now releasing Shoah on Blu-Ray

I have a large gap in classic movies that I haven’t seen and Shoah is a part of that list.  So when I found out that the Criterion Collection was releasing the film on Blu-Ray, I was pretty ecstatic.  But one thing that kept me from buying the film (besides the $90 price tag) is that the documentary spans past nine hours long.  I was a little worried how I would be able to watch the film, especially since I dislike having to watch a movie over the course of two or more days.

This inspired today’s question: what do you do for long movies?  I never try to avoid long films, and when a movie is engaging the time span can fly by.  However, I always find difficulty having time to see them.  I recently purchased a copy of Once Upon A Time In America, a movie I’ve wanted to see for quite a while but unfortunately never have the time to do so (it is almost four hours long).

But what do you do?



  1. Length of a film doesn’t really bother me (unless its terrible and I hate myself for watching it!). I have been known to watch films over a few days, 20 minutes here and there. Normally they aren’t good films, otherwise time flies and I cant switch them off. Never tried a 9 hour documentary though!

    • Yeah, often times I feel the same way. With a good movie the time flies by but when a film’s bad it can drag on, even if it’s short. Thanks for commenting.

  2. As films are all becoming longer anyway, it’s a case of “grin and bear it,” I know that I’ll have to have a potty break in there somewhere! LOL 9 hours? That equals potty breaks, snacks and eye strain! 😀

    • Haha, yeah, I’m not sure if I can last a nine hour sitting based on that. Thanks for commenting.

      • Always a pleasure my friend! 🙂

  3. A long movie doesn’t bother me up to a point. There’s no way I would watch a movie like Shoah in one sitting. I’m just not going to spend 9 straight hours in front of the tube. I’d break it down the watch it.

    • Yeah, I don’t think I would be able to see Shoah in one day, mostly because my eyes would start straining after a few hours. It probably would be a better idea to watch it over the coarse of a few days. Thanks for commenting.

  4. A lot of the time, I try to treat long movies just like shorter ones and watch them all the way through in one sitting. For a four or nine hour film, I’d watch a few hours of it a day. I’ve heard great things about Shoah and I’ve always wanted to see it, but the runtime is very inconvient.

    • I always like to watch movies in one sitting, but if it’s too long, I have to split it in one day. I’d love to see Shoah but watching it would be very difficult, not only for time but the subject matter. Thanks for commenting.

  5. I like to try and watch films in one sitting, especially if I’m really into it. I might forget an important detail or something if I stagger the viewings. Funny you should mention Once Upon a Time, I watched half of it the other week but I think I’ll probably start it again to be honest.

    • Good point about details. I tend to forget little things if I don’t watch a movie all at once. One of these days I’ll have to tackle Once Upon a Time in America. Thanks for commenting.

  6. I’ve seen a few hours of shoah during film class, and it really is worth the effort. I’d just break it up into segments I suppose. Also, On that topic I gave Once Upon a Time In America a go last year, and I wasn’t too keen. Be interested to see what you think of it when you watch it.

    • Shoah’s one I really want to see, though it’d be a hard movie to sit through. I’m planning on watching OUATIA in a few weeks. Thanks for commenting.

  7. Sometimes I have to split up a viewing. That’s just the realities of life.

    • Yeah, I can see that. Watching a 9 hour documentary all at once seems almost impossible. Thanks for commenting.

  8. I try to watch films in one sitting. The longest film I have seen is Lawrence of Arabia, which I caught in a theater. Thankfully, there was a 15-minute intermission in the middle of it, and that made it easier to take in a 4-hour epic all at once.

    I couldn’t imagine sitting through a 9-hour film without breaks though.

    • I like sitting through a movie all at once as well. And as much as I love Lawrence of Arabia, I think having an intermission would help me relax for a while.

      I’m not sure if I could watch Shoah all at once. I think I might have to see it over a few days. Thanks for commenting.

  9. I’m the same as you, I always try and watch films in one hit. But if it is something too huge, sometimes you just gotta break it up. Shoah is on the 1001, so has definitely been on my ‘to see’ list for a fair while. Still haven’t gotten to it yet. Not sure what my longest film is. Dr Mabuse the Gambler was pretty hefty, well over 4 hours.

    • Yeah, watching Shoah all in one sitting would be too much. Thanks for commenting.

  10. I usually get the extra large popcorn rather than the large. I watched Django and wished it was longer! Loved it and it’s length.

    • Django was pretty awesome. Tarantino’s films are never boring. Thanks for commenting.

  11. I am dying to see this actually… and I am not the kind of person who can watch a film in small doses. It is either all or nothing. So when I sit down to watch this, my day is pretty much over. But I can’t wait.

    • I have the same feeling as well. Thanks for commenting.

  12. I know what you mean. If it’s at a cinema, I find it easier than at home, just because those kinds of durations are difficult not to get fidgety during. I’ve still got Bela Tarr’s Satantango (7 hours) at home and have had for years, without watching it, not to mention Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s Berlin-Alexanderplatz (more of a miniseries, but still). I’m sure once you’ve started, things will work out.

    • Yeah, I can see myself a little unwilling to watch a long movie at home. One of these days I will try to tackle Shoah. Thanks for commenting.

  13. Doesn’t normally bother me but if I am in a cinema I just try to stretch my legs 😀

    • Haha, I usually do that as well.

      • Hard not to kick people in the head, I just have to apologies a lot 😀

  14. I actually watch it in parts. I recently saw Lawrence of Arabia and we stopped at the intermission and continued again the next day. I don’t mind it if the story is THAT good. Same with Ben-Hur.

    • Lawrence of Arabia and Ben Hur are two great examples. Though I love them both, I couldn’t sit through them without an intermission. Thanks for commenting.

  15. If it’s a film, like Lawrence of Arabia or Once Upon a Time in America, I have to watch it all at once. I try to clear any work beforehand.

    When I watched Shoah, however, I did it in three parts; I don’t think it quite matter with this documentary, because it’s a very formalist look at the Holocaust; you either watch it for knowledge or emotional connect, and stopping mid-way through and picking it back up will not damage that emotion. 🙂

    • That’s good to hear about Shoah. I don’t think I could be able to see a nine hour movie all at once. Thanks for commenting.

  16. I watched the extended versions of the LOTR trilogy back to back; think 12 plus hours. Of course I had short time outs, but I loved it. Kind of like getting engrossed in a book and not realizing you’ve just read two-hundred pages!

    • Oh yeah, I can definitely see that. With Magnolia, by the time the film ended it didn’t feel like the movie was over three hours long. Thanks for commenting.

  17. 9 hrs !!! sweet hairy jeebus….

    I am not afraid to pause a film at home to let out the dog, make a snack or pour myself a pint.

    • Yeah, I usually feel myself doing stuff like that for long movies as well. I’m not sure if I could watch all of Shoah. Thanks for commenting.

  18. Sunday afternoon, have a break or two for sure 🙂 pot of tea constantly full as well!

    • Haha, caffeine always helps! Thanks for commenting.

  19. I hate to break up a movie over the period of a few days/weeks/months in order to watch it, but I find that for longer movies, I have to watch over a couple days. I’ve restarted 2001: A Space Odyssey so many times this week it’s not even funny. Time just escapes me. and that’s only 3hrs long!

    • Yeah, I hate breaking up movies as well. I watched Metropolis in the course of one day, which I really regretted since I was hooked on that film. 2001’s one I could see any day as it’s my second favorite movie. Thanks for commenting.

  20. […] asks What do you do for long movies? Screenkicker tells us why Why zombies are dead to him […]

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