DIRECTOR: Charlie Lynn
May contain spoiler!
At over 10 hours long, this is the LONGEST movie that we have ever reviewed on nEoFILM. But I need to be honest, I have only seen a 30 second clip of this strange film. But I believe that it is all that I or anyone needed to see of this, simply one continuous unbroken shot of a recently painted grey wall, with the fresh paint drying for 10 hours.
Why you may ask?
Well, this crowd funded film with a budget of over £5000 was conceived and ultimately produced by director Charlie Lynn as a protest, one which he would submit to the BBFC, the British Board of Film Certification to object the principle of mandatory censorship. Though the BBFC is the standard form of film certification here in the U.K., it is not mandatory as such, with the ultimate power resting with local council as to whether a film is shown in cinemas, but a BBFC rating generally proves to be enough to satisfy them.
The poor members of the BBFC would have had to watch every frame of this to grant it the U rating, ensuring that there were no hidden frames or moments concealed within the tedious film, meaning that his protest has hit the board where it hurts and may well encourage others to take the piss in a similar way, though they claimed not to be “phased” by the film.
Once is quirky, funny and I hope that the BBFC have seen the funny side becasue to be honest it made me laugh, but if this kind of thing becomes the norm then it would be a disgrace. Whilst I am not not a fan of unnecessary censorship, there are limits and the BBFC do a good job in my opinion, of safe guarding the material which passes through their doors to ensure that we have suitable guidance, certainly where kids are concerned.
I understand Lynn’s point but I do not entirely agree with it, but points for a novel and inhuman way of making his point. Can you imagine going to work tomorrow and having to watch and pay close attention to over 10 hours of paint drying on a wall?
Cruel and unusual, I reckon…
Especially as Lynn admits that HE has not even watched the whole film himself!
But should we expect this to be released nationwide? What do you think? A DVD release perhaps…? I doubt it…
More from U.K. newpaper, The Telegraph…
“My central issue with the BBFC is that it has a government mandate,” Lyne tells The Telegraph. “I’m not against a ratings board, I think that it’s good that people should be able to be informed about what they watch, but it’s the fact that if they refuse to rate a film, then that film is effectively banned.”
Lyne’s campaign, called Make the Censors Watch Paint Drying, was to cover the costs of the certification: a submission fee of £101.50, and an additional £7.09 for every minute of the film, plus VAT. For most filmmakers, certification costs around £1,000.
Within a month, enough people had contributed to make the film 10 hours and 7 minutes long, after VAT: raising a total of £5,937.
“I really did think [the campaign] would have limited appeal,” says Lyne, “I didn’t expect it to have a life outside of the film industry.”
Lyne said: “I kind of expected them to be very professional and treat it like any other film, not draw any more attrention to it. But I did expect criticism from other people – censorship and certification is a subject that people are passionate about on both sides.”
The filmmaker said that some people have accused his project of being “pointless”, and have said it “won’t change anything”. But Lyne says that he only wanted to prompt discussion, rather than major change: “It’s not like if the BBFC hasn’t got to fall to its knees and close the building by the end of the week, it’s failed. People are discussing how the BBFC works and that makes it worthwhile.”
There has certainly been an increase in awareness around the BBFC: on Tuesday afternoon, the organisation’s website crashed after news of the certification was posted on Reddit.
Lyne is currently in discussions with one London cinema about a potential one-off screening of Paint Drying, now that the film has been certified, but nothing has yet been confirmed.