Home YouTube Releases Its 90-Minute, User-Generated Documentary Film For Free

YouTube Releases Its 90-Minute, User-Generated Documentary Film For Free

Last summer, YouTube embarked an ambitious film project of the sort that is only possible in the 21st century. They asked thousands of people all over the world to document their experiences on a single day and upload the footage.

The result, titled “Life in a Day,” is a 90-minute film directed by Kevin Macdonald and produced by Ridley Scott. It documents human life on Earth for one day, insofar as such a thing is possible within a span of 90 minutes. The movie, which has already premiered at a few festivals, is now available in its entirety on YouTube.

When the project was first underway, ReadWriteWeb’s own Curt Hopkins questioned whether it was truly possible to effectively document life in a single day with constraints such as the inherent length of a feature film and YouTube’s own terms of service restrictions. Such a task would seem to be impossible, but a project of this nature can at least provide a snapshot of life for a small sample of human beings across the planet.

We’ll leave a more in-depth critique of the film up to the movie critics, but if nothing else, it’s a very interesting concept, made possibly only by digital technology and the Web.

Macdonald and Scott pieced together their creation from 4,500 hours of footage uploaded to YouTube, all of it purportedly recorded on July 24, 2010. Even six years prior, gathering that much footage from so many geographically dispersed locations would have required a huge budget, large film crew and extensive air travel.

In this case, the project was backed by a giant tech company who can afford to bring on award-winning talent to help piece the whole thing together. That ability sure made the finished product looked nice, but we can imagine a similar approach being used by amateur filmmakers, as well as budding professionals, who now have history’s largest, most distributed film crew at their disposal.

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