Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Hours

We're almost at the end of the 15-part (!) documentary, The Story Of Film: An Odyssey, shown weekly on TCM over the past couple months. It's created and liltingly narrated by Mark Cousins, and does nothing less than look at the worldwide history and phenomenon of film.

Cousins has strong opinions and clearly loves his subject.  He sometimes makes weird judgment calls, though that's only to be expected.  But I wonder if this Irish hipster (and you know he's a hipster because he doesn't comb his hair and doesn't wear socks) hasn't turned off the--I'm guessing--conservative TCM audience.  They like Hollywood classics, for the most part, and Cousins spends some time with them, but more often, in his arty way, looks overseas.  And every now and then he inserts his political views (generally stated as fact).

I don't know what numbers TCM is getting for the series--or gets in general--but I've noticed when this doc started it was featured in prime time on Monday and repeated on Tuesday.  Lately they've only been shown once, and then late on Monday.  TCM may not be that ratings-conscious, and they do adventurous things on a regular basis, such as show silent films and fairly modern indies, but still, is this epic testing their patience?

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