December 5, 2008 Now that our living rooms are equipped with massive flat screen TVs pushing 1080p resolution at a film-mimicking 24 frames per second, and 5.1 surround systems providing reference quality cinema sound (and all this source material coming off a single disc of 50GB capacity) I ask you this: When do we get a "Who's that guy?" button.
Watching Coppola's restoration of the amazing Godfather trilogy on Blu-ray is a shining example of how much of today's media is targeted to today's short attention spans. Put someone under 30 years of age in front of the tube playing one of these films and no matter how well they might think they're doing at keeping up, at some stage in the film, one of two inevitable questions will arise: "Who's that guy?" or "What just happened?"
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So here's a free tip for the movie studios: Forget the director's commentary audio tracks and behind-the-scenes footage. The "Who's that guy?" button is a special feature worth having. The first manufacturer to include it as standard on their remotes wins my eternal gratitude.