Relative Timelines

When we watch movies, TV serials or plays, we experience the story’s perception of time relative to our own time. Most movies and serials occur in what I’d call faster than real time. What that means is that in the two hours you spend to watch the movie, the events on screen may span days, years or centuries. Faster than Real Time.

There are a few movies like Phone Booth and TV series like 24 that occur in Real Time, i.e. the action on screen takes exactly as long as it took you to watch it.

Why am I saying all this? Well, I’ve been passively watching (sitting in the same room as the TV) lots of Hindi TV serials lately and I think I’ve finally figured out why all of them irritate me so much. Without exception, in all of them, the action takes place in slower than real time!

Every word and every whisper is shown from multiple camera angles and for every action, you’ll be shown the reaction on every face. If a door separates two actors, then the director will ensure that you hear the same dialogue from both sides of the door. So kind of him! And in case you forgot what the last scene was before going to commercials, it is repeated afterwards for your benefit.

In the end, you are left feeling like your mundane life is actually way more happening then the lives depicted on screen! No wonder I don’t feel like watching :-)