Show Business: Why Do Movies Seem So Long?

In the new Hollywood, briskness has given way to bloat

Arthur Mayer was a university professor, a Hollywood publicist, an importer of trail-blazing foreign films, the operator of a 42nd Street horror-movie house and, toward the end of his 94 years, a member of the New York Film Festival selection committee. Day after sweltering summer day he would sit in a cramped Manhattan screening room patiently enduring the tortuous eccentricities of directors from Rumania to Rodeo Drive. But when asked whether one of these angst marathons should appear in the festival, he would often...

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