The Twenty Minute Rule
Alfred Hitchock once famously said, “The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.” Sure, it’s a smart quote, but there are plenty of great movies that violate the spirit of Hitchcock’s rule. Goodfellas, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (hell, several Sergio Leone films, for that matter) and Seven Samurai all place some serious strain on the human bladder.
Not that I’m trying to overrule Hitchcock’s authority or anything, but I’ve got my own rule I simply call The Twenty-Minute Rule. It’s easy: no matter how long the movie is, if something doesn’t happen in the first twenty minutes that captures your attention, you’re wasting your time. Of course, there are a few exceptions *cough* Audition *cough*. For the most part, however, any action movie that doesn’t have, you know, some action in the first twenty minutes is cheating you.
I’ll be using The Twenty Minute Rule as a criteria in my reviews, so I wrote this page as a reference so that I won’t have to explain it every single time.