Are We Losing Our Attention Spans?

Photo by Yathin S Krishnappa.

Photo by Yathin S Krishnappa.

This weekend my favourite husband and I finally got around to watching The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 because we don’t mind being a little behind on popular movies if it means seeing them at a quarter of the cost it would be to go to the movie theatre on opening weekend. (Wow, that sounds like the kind of stuff my parents said when I was growing up. Isn’t it bizarre when that happens?)

I really enjoyed the trilogy the Hunger Games movies are based on, and the first two movies were great as well.

This time around, though, I felt restless. I don’t want to give away spoilers for anyone who hasn’t read the books or watched the movies, but certain events from Mockingjay were stretched out a little too much for my tastes. They could have easily all fit into one movie if the filmmakers had made it a little longer than normal.

Drew completely disagreed. He liked having more time to feel the rising tension of everything that’s happening to Katniss and the other rebels.

“I think we’re losing our attention spans,” he said as we discussed this. He liked having time to savour  the storyline. I wanted more action.

Did we agree? No, but he made me think.

Are we losing our attention spans?

I know I’m quick to pull out my cellphone when I’m waiting somewhere boring. It has almost everything I need to stay entertained whether I’m stuck in that situation for ten minutes or an hour. There is also something to be said for looking extraordinarily busy in certain parts of Toronto to avoid unwanted attention.

I also only tend to give books a dozen pages or so to catch my interest before I move on the next one. To be fair, though, I’ve always been like this. Life is far too short to waste time on books you’re only half-interested in.

What do you think? How has your attention span changed over the last decade or two?


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12 Responses to Are We Losing Our Attention Spans?

  1. Opa!

    I find old movies/tv shows very slow and boring.

  2. “People these days can’t seem to tolerate one moment without
    entertainment!” – Samuel A. Aykroyd (Dan Aykroyd’s Great-Grandfather)

  3. Fred Schoch

    Interesting post as usual. I really liked the first two movies but was not impressed with the trailers for the next one. i think its a storyline thats gotten old. It seems to be different actors with the same futeristic storyline with just a little variation. I do have a question for you, who is your not so favorite husband 😉

  4. I live on the 8th floor of a condo building and can barely handle taking the elevator to the parking garage without my phone. It’s terrifying how short my attention span is now.

  5. Sarah B.

    I didn’t like Mockingjay Part 1 as much as the other movies either, but, like you, I think this is mainly because I didn’t enjoy the last book in the trilogy as much as the previous two. I will say that I do enjoy “slower” paced books and movies at times. I think there is a difference between a book or movie that drags along and is uninteresting vs. one that is simply subtler in its appeal.

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