In today's What If?, Randall "XKCD" Munroe tries to answer the question: "Did WWII last longer than the total length of movies about WWII? For that matter, which war has the highest movie time:war time ratio?" (Cue the theme from M*A*S*H).
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IMDb lists 4,893 films tagged with "world-war-two". The list contains full-length movies, TV episodes, short films, and the occasional miniseries. I downloaded a random sample of these entries and found that the average run time was 95 minutes, which means the entire collection probably has a combined length of a little over 300 days. World War II lasted six years, for a war:film ratio of about 7:1.
This ratio is hard to beat; no other multi-year war has been the subject of nearly as many films. This is understandable; we're talking about bloodiest conflict in human history right in the middle of the golden age of Hollywood.
Matthew Haughey noticed that movies starring British actor Jason Statham, with only a single exception, sooner or later involve him punching someone. At Time to Statham Punch, he maintains statistics on the timing and circumstances of these punches.
“We believe that the new classics on this list are destined to become old classics,” writes the BBC. “Whether or not that happens is ultimately up to you, the moviegoers. But one thing is certain: cinema isn’t dying, it’s evolving.”
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