Life Lessons/Amadeus

For this first blog post response, we’ll address the two artist films we’ve seen thus far.  Consider the screen durations of “Life Lessons” (1989) and Amadeus (1984).  The first is right around 35 minutes; the second is 2 hours and 40 minutes (theatrical cut).  In other words, Amadeus is almost 4 times as long.  What do you think is lost and/or gained from having these very different running times?  How do the lengths contribute to the themes of the artist film genre?  (Think of the in-class writing assignment from Tuesday.)

43 thoughts on “Life Lessons/Amadeus

  1. ‘Amadeus’, being three hours long compared to ‘Life Lessons’ only being around 45 minuets, gave Amadeus a documentary feeling. It was very different feelings because Amadeus had room for slow parts from being so long but ironically I didn’t encounter nearly as many slow parts as I did In ‘Life Lessons’.

  2. In “Life Lessons”, I do think the opportunity to more fully develop characters is lost when you only have 35 minutes to present a story, but you still see enough of the characters to figure out their idiosyncrasies. In “Amadeus”, you really see the progression of the characters’ flaws such as Salieri’s loss of faith and growing jealousy and the growing madness within Mozart in that longer time period. Both films show the inner workings of the artist and what he thrives on and needs in order to create. I think “Life Lessons” used a subtle, interpretive approach to presenting this while “Amadeus” used a forthright approach.

  3. In the shorter film we watched “Life Lessons”, the storyline follows Lionel and Pauletta. And similar in Amadeus where it follows two main characters (Amadeus Mozart & Antonia Salieri) The film Amadeus had much more time and room to create a larger storyline with much more back ground to the characters and film to present to the audience. I feel like although in both stories it follows well and is very similar in their ways, the ending of Amadeus is much more of progress and development of the characters, with a concluding ending . Whereas Life Lessons seems to restart with Lionel’s bad habits, and the ending seems more like a circle rather than closure for the audience.

  4. “Life Lessons” and “Amadeus” were of the same genre but had two different extremes of run times. “Amadeus” was nearly three hours and because of this seemed to drag on. There were parts that were interesting and kept me entertained and some that seemed to have me checking the time. However, I think that “Amadeus” does gain from having such a long run time. They can show full orchestra scenes and show Amadeus’s genius. The audience can appreciate entire songs where if it was shorter, there wouldn’t be enough room for this. “Life Lessons” had a great runtime. Although being thrown into the story can sometimes confuse the audience, I think that the way it ended really concluded the entire story. It is the beginning of the next cycle and everything comes together for the audience. Lionel’s art also isn’t as tasking. It is something that can be shown at various points in the process. I think that these two examples show how the artist film has to be manipulate depending on the type of art being worked with.

  5. The differences between the length of the movies are important to note. I feel as if Life Lessons could’ve been longer but solely to just give more insight on the characters as someone mentioned above. But aside from that I think it being a short filmed worked. Amadeus seemed almost too long for me, had they decided to cut the movie maybe 20-30 minutes short I believe you would still get the same end result. Fortunately with films there is no one time fits all. With Amadeus being 4 times as long you’re able to see the intensity of his jealousness for Mozart as the movie progress while in Life Lessons you pretty much are just forced to have the assumption that Lionel is jealous or for lack of better words angry in the sense that she no longer wishes to sleep with him which then fuels his motivation to create more art. Overall life lessons could’ve potentially been longer and Amadeus could’ve been shorter.

  6. The differentiating lengths of each movie made them unique and gave the audience a different feel for each one. Life Lessons, being so short did not give the audience much time to learn the history of characters before it ended. We didn’t know that Lionel had a pattern of preying on young women to fuel his art, until the very last scene. Whereas in Amadeus, we got to see all of the different sides of Salieri and watch as his jealousy took him completely over. The longer movie allowed for the audience to connect more with Salieri as we watch his struggle from beginning to end versus only getting a glimpse of Lionel’s madness in the middle of a cycle.

  7. In “life Lessons”, I think the purpose of having the film shorter, was to eliminate outside interference and gain key focal points being that of Lionel’s desired love life, and how it fuels his painting. What was lost was not having the chance to fully understand why Lionel chooses to hop around and keep going in the same cycle. In “Amadeus”, the longer film goes into to detail about Mozart’s life, gaining greater viewership to what was going on throughout the film. However, having a longer film drags out the plot, and looses focus to the theme. Different Lengths contribute to the themes of the artist film genre because it allows internal and external actions presented in several different ways.

  8. In the short film “Life Lessons”, running at 35 minutes, the task to get the theme across becomes a vital part due to the short amount of time given. Every shot and scene is important and requires crucial information to be shared to understand the purpose of the film. Whereas in “Amadeus”, the film has more time to create a plot and story. The scenes can feed off one another, creating more conflict and resolution. There also is an attachment that grows with the characters. Audiences become more involved with Salieri and Mozart’s lives that it leaves the audiences wanting more, which they will get. With “Life Lessons” being so short, the audiences does not establish a strong of a relationship with Lionel.

  9. The length of the two movies affects how the audience perceives each film. In “Life Lessons”, directed by Martin Scorcese, the audience only gets a glimpse into the life of Lionel Dobie, portrayed by Nick Nolte. Whereas in “Amadeus”, directed by Milos Formon, the audience is transported to the times of Mozart and the struggle to produce popular art in the royal court. A film like “Amadeus” needs a lengthy runtime to properly convey a story, or in this case the story of the life of Amadeus Mozart. The character of Lionel Dobie is a fictitious character in the modern world, but the film still deals with themes such as the struggle to produce art and romantic frustration coupled with outside factors such as stress.

  10. In a shorter film like ‘Life Lessons’ it’s important for every shot to mean something to the overall idea of the film, especially since the director only has a limited amount of time to have everything make sense and get the themes across. With the film ‘Amadeus’, the director has a longer amount of time to get everything done therefore he can make his shot longer and include more information regarding the backstory and the fluff of the characters. ‘Amadeus’ is able to be less careful in choosing shots since that film has more time, each shot isn’t going to have to be as meaningful as the ones in ‘Life Lessons’. With a longer and more drawn out film, it can really take away from the themes the director is trying to push since there will be so much more information included, all of the extra stuff can be distracting to the audience.

  11. Amadeus and Life Lessons differ by how characters are developed. In Life Lessons, it is very quick and gives more of an everyday life of the characters. But Amadeus is over a long period of time giving more of biography feel where the audience get to see all sides of the characters.

  12. Though the two films are similar in terms of themes, they are both very different in regards to plot, action, and characters. I think that the running times of each fit perfectly with the genre of each film. In “Life Lessons”, having a shorter running time makes it clear that the director wants to get his point across in a short amount of time and causes the viewer to pay close attention to detail. The shots matter and the way that the characters are built matters as well. It is harder to develop characters in a shorter amount of time, than it is with a longer amount. “Amadeus” being almost 3 hours long gave the characters time to develop and also gave the viewer more insight into who they are because there is more time attributed to them. Characterization is very important and it is difficult to do that with a short amount of time. It was in the case of this film especially since the characters were based off of real people. The longer running time worked well for “Amadeus” because of the time period that it was based of off. There was a lot of history and information that the producers needed to unpack and when that is the case it makes more sense to have a longer running time.

  13. The different run times in “Amadeus” and “Life Lessons” affect the story and plot development greatly. “Amadeus” was very long and had time to develop the characters and develop many more themes compared to “Life Lessons” that was only about 35 minutes. As someone stated earlier, “Life Lessons” had a short time to develop its theme which allowed the viewer to easily see the theme, while “Amadeus” had almost 3 hours to develop its themes. “Amadeus” had more time to go into depth and detail, whereas the 35 minutes really limited the depth in “Life Lessons”. They had to focus on the gritty details that needed to be known in order to effectively get the theme across, thus only showing enough key elements of the characters for the viewer to make their assumption of what kind of character it is (there is very little background). The film almost doesn’t end; it had one of those “cycle” endings where, the ending is the beginning again and it might end the same way or it might not. You are left to assume Lionel has this cycle and will repeat his ways. In “Amadeus”, you didn’t have to make an assumption of what might happen in the end, leaving the viewer with more closure.

  14. In reference to ‘Amadeus’ and ‘Life Lessons’ running time, it is very different. ‘Life Lessons’ only being about 35 minutes means that the theme and characters have to develop very quickly as compared to ‘Amadeus’ where it is about 3 hours long. ‘Amadeus’ has a long time to develop and that is why the theme comes together more at the end of the film. I think ‘Amadeus’ could have gotten the theme across in a shorter amount of time like ‘Life Lessons’ did.

  15. The difference between the time lengths of both movies could be related to the type of artwork itself. In “Life Lessons,” Lionel is creating one piece of artwork, whereas, in “Amadeus,” Mozart creates the great pieces of his life. Moreover, the one piece of artwork in “Life Lessons” can represent how Lionel’s greatness “remains the same”. In “Amadeus”, Mozart seems to get greater and greater until the end, on his deathbed, where he creates what is said to be his greatest piece of work, even though it is unfinished.
    Another take on it could be, if Lionel’s story started from his youth, making the movie longer, it would have ruined the whole purpose of the movie, which was Lionel going through a cycle when creating. Mozart’s and Salieri’s stories were made to show their lives and their works through different stages.
    A third take could be in relation to the theme of jealousy. In “Life Lessons,” Lionel was revealed to, in the end, go through young women who want to be great artists. “Life Lessons” shows only one of these cycles and Paulette’s jealousy of Lionel’s talent, and that is all that is needed for the story to show this. However, in “Amadeus,” the theme of jealousy starts in Salieri’s early life when he was a young boy, and his growth in that jealousy, abstaining in every indulgence to be better, and then eventually manipulating Mozart. This entire storyline needed the time it did to represent Salieri’s entire life being consumed by jealousy and Mozart’s “effortlessness” at greatness.

  16. The different lengths in each film made them unique in their own way. “Amadeus” seemed to be too long and it caught me dosing off from time to time. But the 3 hour length did make me fully understand the characters, and it made me recognize character development more. Such as the different music styles Mozart was producing. In “Life Lessons” it seemed to be too short to fully understand the characters. Its interesting to see the two different styles of films. Overall, I think “Amadeus” could have been shorter and “Life Lessons” could have been longer.

  17. I think that the length and structure of these two films fit both their styles and subject matters. Life Lessons is short, and you see just a brief portion of Lionel and Paulette’s lives, culminating in a confrontation between Lionel and Paulette and the unveiling of Lionel’s painting. The film’s length creates the same impression as a painting — it feels like one look at a brief emotional moment in time for its characters. You don’t need context and buildup to the events of this film, just as you don’t need them in a painting.
    Amadeus’s length parallels Mozart’s music. The length of Mozart’s music is brought up multiple times, and Mozart is criticized for having “too many notes”. When Mozart bristles at these criticisms, it feels like Milos Forman commenting on the film’s lush narrative style and long runtime as well. One message of Amadeus is that art shouldn’t be watered down to suit popular tastes, and while that may be a somewhat pompous message, the film’s length matches that philosophy.

  18. In Life Lessons there was a very narrow plot, I felt like the movie was very focused on only Lionel and Paulette. Where on the contrary in Amadeus there were many characters and although the movie was focused around Salieri and Mozart; the other characters played a big roles also. I think making Life Lessons a very short film there was not as much room for a more complicated plot or twists in the story. In Amadeus there were many shocking moments and a long plot; as a viewer it felt like the movie was dragged on and you were waiting to see what will happen between Salieri and Mozart. Both movies carried similar themes of jealously and competition. In Amadeus Lionel was always trying to win Paulette back and would get jealous when she seemed disinterested. In Amadeus, Salieri felt threatened by Mozart’s talent and frustrated because he viewed him as immature. In Amadeus, the long length of the film gave Salieri a chance to act on his emotions and in Life Lessons Paulette just left. I feel like if Life Lessons was a longer film there would be more to the plot and she would have came back to Lionel or another surprise would occur.

  19. I think making Life Lessons a very short film stopped the chance for Lionel and Paulette to have more twists in their story. For example, at the end of the movie Paulette leaves Lionel but if the film was as long as Amadeus she could come back or another surprise could occur. In Amadeus, the film was so long that as a viewer, I felt like I was constantly waiting to see what would happen between Salieri and Mozart. They’re rivalry was so intense and the length of the movie gave the characters a chance to act on their emotions. In Life Lessons I think if the movie was longer Lionel could have acted on Paulette leaving.

  20. In ” Life Lessons”, every shot and scene was important. For a time duration of about 35 minutes, the director can not afford to have a random shot that does not mean anything or give the audience background on the characters/story. It was also solely focused on two characters. Although “Amadeus” is mainly about Mozart, it is a third person opinionated story told by Salieri who also explained moments in his life. Throughout “Amadeus”, there were some scenes that could have been excluded, as it lead away from the main story. I personally preferred “Life Lessons” over “Amedeus” as it told the story and did not take any detours like “Amadeus” did. All in all, both films were executed well by the directors, and did explain the story well.

  21. Both “Amadeus” and “Life Lessons” follow a similar pattern, despite their different lengths in time. Both the stories follow two main characters. “Amadeus” Follows Mozart and Salieri, and “Life Lessons” follows Lionel and Pauletta. “Amadeus” was close to three hours long, which made it difficult to watch at times but really takes you into the life of Mozart and shows you the brilliance that he had. “Life Lessons” is a much shorter film, only being 45 minutes. This length was short but was still able to show the life of Lionel, just like “Amadeus” showed the life of Mozart.

  22. I think longer running times allow the viewer to catch subtle details that can further enhance the main themes such as sacrifice in “Amadeus”. Salieri says that he sacrifices his life by devoting his body and soul to God, yet he indulges in sweets and falls victim to wrath against Mozart. With shorter running times such as “Life Lessons”, the viewer is shown more broader ideas to convey the main theme of sacrifice, such as how the viewer does not see the development of Lionel and Paulette’s relationship but enough is shown to understand how it affects Lionel and his artwork.

  23. The movie “Life Lessons” by Martin Scorsese and “Amadeus” by Milos Forman are two different movies focused on a very similar genre. They are both movies about artists, one real and one fictional. The run times greatly determined how both the stories were going to be told. With a run time of 2 hours and 40 minutes, Amadeus gives us the opportunity to learn about the characters and grow to care about them as the movie unfolds. It allows us to see a story with a beginning, middle and end. Life Lessons on the other hand, with a run time of 35 minutes, does not give us the opportunity to learn and grow with our characters, we do not get the smooth start, middle and end that forms a complete story. Instead we jump right into the fray of things which has Lionel and Paulette arguing about their relationship. The benefit to the shorter run time is that the director is forced to focus on telling his story without any drawn-out scenes or conversations between the characters, but loses some of the character building people enjoy.

  24. Having a longer film like Amadeus could lead to more character development and greater detail. This could however be a bad thing in that it could cause the audience to become overwhelmed or confused by too much going on. If there is a shorter film, it has the potential to be very to the point. I do not believe that there is much influence on the lengths of the two films contributing the the themes of the films. If anything the longer films may allow for the audience to identify them easier or possibly allow for more themes.

  25. Having a movie being longer than 45 minutes allow more character development and would most likely give readers a better understanding of the characters’ background. It also allows more character attachment causing viewers to be more emotionally involved in the movie. With that said, despite the fact that Amadeus was four times longer than Life Lessons, I think that Life Lessons showed just enough to allow viewers to stay engaged and know how one thing led to another. Depending on the movie, having a movie that is over 2 hours can be a bit hard to follow just like Amadeus was. While the movie went in great detail about the life of Mozart and his work, it was still a bit hard to follow.

  26. I believe that while both movies relayed their chosen messages well within their given time, “Amadeus” was able to develop deeper characters and explore a more complex plot within its three hours better than “Life Lessons.” While more explanation and building was able to be done in “Amadeus,” it was quite long and viewers could have a hard time following with the movie opposed to the little over half an hour that “Life Lessons” was. The shortness of “Life Lessons” left something to be gained within the complexity of Lionel and Paulette’s relationship while the length of “Amadeus” allowed for such a complex build-up of emotions regarding the rivalry of Amadeus and Salieri.

  27. The movies “Life Lessons,” by Martin Scorsese, and Amadeus, by Milos Forman, though both part of the artist film genre, have entirely different running times. With roughly a 45 minute running time, “Life Lessons” presents to the audience a plot that is very much to the point with not as much background information on the main characters. Amadeus, on the other hand, is nearly 3 hours long and is incorporated with more background information, side stories and plots, and more detail in regards to the film’s lead characters.

  28. I think that what is gained in Amadeus is that we have more time to understand the characters traits, Life Lessons did a good job of this but we didn’t fully understand until the end of the movie Lionel’s real character. Having a longer movie gives the character more time to show their developments. The genres allow the internal and external characteristics shown to be presented in a variety of ways so the viewer can interpret it however they would like.

  29. “Amadeus” being a longer movie allows it to go into more depth about the subject and the subjects life whereas in “Life Lessons” the main characters life is implied by the viewers in the short amount of time that his life is talked about. The titles of the two movies are a huge hint of the movie entails. In my opinion, “Life Lessons” sounds like multiple instances where the movie is trying to teach the viewers and in this case lessons about life. But “Amadeus” sounds like a story about a person because it is a proper noun. Longer movies are better for documentaries but the message a movie is conveying can be explained in any time limit of filmed the right way

  30. Here we have two good films. Adding time to “Life Lessons” would only delay the inevitable (Paulette leaves), but we would find out more about Lionel’s character. Regarding the film Amadeus, some of the opera scenes were rather lengthy that could have been shortened, but overall the story line flowed very nicely in the allotted time.

  31. Since Life Lessons is only 35 minutes, the director has to be more straightforward within the scenes. In Life Lessons, they had to quickly go through the plotline as well as easily try to display different character dynamics within the short time. Amadeus in a sense has more to gain because the audience doesn’t have to guess or come to conclusions about the characters or story. In Life Lessons since it’s so short you have to make certain assumptions about the characters or story through acting tactics, however, since it is short it gets straight to the point. In a sense, I like that Life Lessons gets you straight to the point but I enjoyed Amadeus because you get to see a full plot as well as really get to know the character, Salieri. In Amadeus because of the lengthy screen time you’re also able to assume many different themes instead of just one, as well as being able to see that Salieri struggles with more than just one conflict. In Life Lessons, Lionel struggles with jealousy he experiences with his muse Paulette when eventually it’s revealed to the audience that he constantly finds muses so maybe you could assume Lionel has a problem with staying invested in certain aspects of his life. In Amadeus you’re able to see Salieri struggle with many things such as his relationship with God, comparing himself to Mozart, and then even when he thinks he’s eliminated the problem, Mozart, he still struggles with constantly hearing about Mozart’s music.

  32. Many different things can be lost/gained from different running times. With shorter running times, like the 35 minute run time of “Life Lessons,” it is much harder to articulate differernt themes. This causes the film maker to only articulate one main theme, however, this allows a more detailed and concise take on a theme. With a longer run time, like “Amadeus,” film makers are able to utilize many different themes. This may result in a less detailed and concise movie. In terms of the artist film genre, longer run times may be able to show different things about the artist, however the audience may not get a deep understanding of those things. With a shorter run time, the audience would be able to have a detailed understanding of one particular part of that artist’s life.

  33. In “Amadeus,” the running time is roughly 2 hours and 35 minutes, while “Life Lessons” is only 35 minutes. This means that for “Amadeus,” the audience can get a more detailed, character development on protagonists like Salieri throughout the movie; whereas for “Life Lessons,” the audience can only see a brief change in character development in Lionel. Jealousy plays a theme in both movies; however, in “Amadeus,” Salieri is conflicted on Mozart’s work where it is beautiful, yet fears that his career is in jeopardy. Since this movie is much longer, this allows the director to add more scenes on what actions lead upon Salieri’s jealousy, like him changing his views on God. For “Life Lessons,” Lionel gets jealous when Paulette interacts with other guys, but since this movie is short, it vaguely portrays this theme. In general, a longer film tends to inform the audience in many perspectives and in detail.

  34. The 3-hour length of Amadeus allowed for more fully developed characters, a more detailed plot, and the use of subplots in comparison to Life Lessons. In Amadeus, the characters had stronger backstories that allowed the viewer to better understand the dynamics of the characters. The plot of Amadeus through the conclusion was very detailed and gave a stronger sense of closure, as it was not just a slice of Mozart and Salieri’s lives. The longer length also allowed for little subplots to be used to supplement the main plot. With Life Lessons, the plot was required to be very straightforward, and many things about the characters must be understood rather than explicitly said. The extended time of Amadeus allowed for the themes to be explored more deeply and be expanded further. Despite what Amadeus gained over Life Lessons, both movies were able to adequately portray the idea of the unhinged artist driven by pain and sacrifice.

  35. The difference in the length of the movies results in a different focus on the characters and plot. “Life Lessons” run time did not allow it time to introduce or go into detail about the main characters’ histories or other characters as “Amadeus” did. This made the focus of the movie be entirely on the relationship and dynamic of Lionel and Paulette, which I believe worked fine because it still delivered on the theme of the suffering artist. There was no need for the movie to be long or have extraneous details. “Brevity is the soul of wit.”

  36. The very different lengths of each film present definite advantages and disadvantages for each. The lengthy duration of Amadeus allows not only for a greater deal of characterization and character development, but also allows the audience to truly recognize Mozart’s genius. While “Life Lessons” only allows the audience to see Dobie create a single piece of art, Amadeus spans Mozart’s entire career showing his full versatility and creativity. On the other hand, the relative brevity of “Life Lessons” makes it more concise, both narratively and thematically. Taken as a semi-autobiographical work, “Life Lessons” allowed Scorsese to make a point about his own troubled romantic history without having to put in enough material to make it feature-length. Scorsese used exactly as much time as he needed to make his point, making “Life Lessons” a very focused piece.

  37. The movie Life Lessons by Martin Scorsese runs for 35 minutes. The movie Amadeus by Milos Forman runs for 2 hours and 40 minutes. The fact that Life Lessons runs only for 35 minutes shows how quick the storyline was told. The movie goes about an artist who feeds off his muses and throughout the film we are already seeing developed characters. We learn that Lionel is a struggling artist who loves to paint and his ex-girlfriend Paulette no longer wants to spend time with him, and the way Scorsese expressed the movie was quick. The movie Amadeus running for a full 2 hours, almost 3 hours, we the audience were able to fully understand and follow the characters’ lives. We are able to see Mozart and Salieri’s characters developing throughout the film allowing us to create our own point of views on them. Life Lessons is considered a short film that is fictional, while Amadeus is a long movie with a non-fictional storyline. The lengths of these films contribute to the artist film genre by the way they show real artistic work that is new, different, and exciting.

  38. With a length of 35 minutes Life Lessons was not given enough time to have the plot properly unfold. Keep in mind that most television shows you watch weekly are starting to become 45 minutes. With the shows not giving that much insight or pushing the plot along substantially. This is just an example of how Life Lessons was not given enough time to really get into the plot and really show all sides of the characters. While Amadeus on the other hand has a length of almost 3 hours. This allows for a slower unfolding of the character and allowing for the addition of sub plots for secondary characters. This also slows the main plot down, also allowing for the viewer to become more attached to the characters since we have more time with them in our presence. With a film of this length there are downsides though. The viewer can also start to lose interest, become invested in the side plot and lose sight of the intentions of the main characters plot. I think that if artist films followed the template of most documentaries with a length of an hour and 45 minutes to a little over two hours they would be the most effective. It almost seems that the length of the film has a correlation with how known or how famous the artist is. Both films had a troubled artist who needed pain and suffering to create masterpieces. The fictional Lionel didn’t have much of a back story while we are able to see the depth of Mozart’s career, hints the longer film.

  39. The long run time of Amadeus was vital in creating this artistic masterpiece. Many themes existed in this film, and they would not have had the opportunity to develop if it weren’t for the allowance of time. For instance, madness was a central theme that gradually became more and more prevalent as the story progressed. It would have been much more difficult to convey the evolution of and transition from sanity to insanity in a shorter amount of time. In contrast, the much shorter screen duration of “Life Lessons” gave us more of a snapshot and glimpse into the artist’s life. Doing so kept the audience’s attention and kept the progression of the story moving at a quick and upbeat pace. This aspect advances the overarching idea that Lionel has generated a cycle, constantly moving on from girl to girl as the relationships fall to poor health and art is created.

  40. The long run time of Amadeus was vital in creating this artistic masterpiece. Many themes existed in this film, and they would not have had the opportunity to develop if it weren’t for the allowance of time. For instance, madness was a central theme that gradually became more and more prevalent as the story progressed. It would have been much more difficult to convey the evolution of and transition from sanity to insanity in a shorter amount of time. In contrast, the much shorter screen duration of “Life Lessons” gave us more of a snapshot and glimpse into the artist’s life. The quick and upbeat pace of the film kept the attention of viewers and contributed to the overarching theme of repetition. Lionel had created a lifestyle cycle in order to produce art, which involved him rapidly moving on from thought to thought and relationship to relationship.

  41. I think that by making “Amadeus” 3 hours it allowed for the characters to truly develop over the course of the movie. Salieri was truly able to show his progression of obsession over Mozart. There was more time to create a build up of events, showing Mozart’s growth as an artist as well as the ways which his life overall declined. In “Life Lessons” though there is more urgency with the way that the story is laid out. We cannot watch Lionel create his entire painting bit by bit the same way which there was time to include multiple operas within “Amadeus.” Allowing the movie to be 3 hours though is dangerous because there is the risk of loosing the audience’s attention, while “Life Lessons” fits well into the roughly 40 minute attention span which most people have.

  42. I think that with Life Lessons, the movie length forced the viewer to create a backstory of abuse, manipulation, and an overall toxic relationship between artist and assistant. This movie starts with the two characters very much in the thick of their toxicity. In Amadeus, the viewer has to watch to find out the lengths of what Salieri’s jealously and resentment eventually leads to. In my opinion, this created a suspense Life Lessons’ wasn’t able to achieve. Yes it was long, but I became invested in the characters, which wasn’t the case when I watched Life Lessons.

    With Life Lessons, it was short because Lionel’s time with each of his assistants was brief, and viewers can assume it was a cycle that just repeated. In Amadeus, it recounts the life of Salieri, his tormented period with Mozart (and God), and his tormented end of life without Mozart. I can kind of see how it was necessary to be as long as it was, in order to mirror Salieri’s long life.

  43. There are several factors at play when considering the lengths of “Life Lessons” and “Amadeus.” First, In Amadeus the viewer is able to watch the development of the characters over time; this could create an empathetic or compassionate connection from viewer to character. Whereas in “Life Lessons”, it is harder to feel those things because it is so short and the viewer does not have time to make those connections. In Life Lessons, Every shot is important to keep the plot flowing and for the theme to come across within those 35 minutes. However in Amadeus, that importance fades, which could cause the theme and plot to get misinterpreted or misconstrued along the way. It seemed necessary to have a long runtime for Amadeus as it is telling a story that took place over a good amount of time, whereas in Life Lessons it was unnecessary for a long runtime because the story took place over just a couple of days and only highlighted the important segments of those days.

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