Put That In Your Pipe And Smoke It

'Bright Leaves' delivers a fix to Ross McElwee fans

CP:You have established a very singular voice. But do you worry about your place in the market given all the exposure to documentaries in the last few years?

McElwee:Yeah, sure. Sometimes I think I'm making films that are too slow for today's audiences. My shots go on for 30 or 40 seconds--sometimes for more than a minute--and my narrations take their time. My films are not short: They're an hour and 45 minutes each. Maybe these kinds of films can't hope to power their way into the mainstream. I don't use music; I don't do all of these things that generally make films more [easily sold]. Chalk it up to stubbornness on my part or perversity or whatever, but for now I'm sticking to my way of making films.

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