What Watching Speed Racer Can Teach You About Business

Hi gang,

There’s a reason I own a company that sells movies –  I am a movie freak.   Just love ’em.  If I weren’t already married, I would marry movies – I would have movies baby.  You get my point.

I’ve recently discovered a really cool new wrinkle to being a Dad – my kids like movies too!   My oldest son is now 7, and he has officially declared that he wants to go see movies with daddy at a theatre.

So this afternoon, I said what the heck and took my critter to see “Speed Racer”.

“Speed Racer”  is the new project from the Wachowski brothers – the eBayers of moviemaking.   They created one of the best ideas in movie history, the Matrix,  and then spent 4 more hours screwing it up with two disastrous sequels (The Architect? The Oracle? The Keymaster?  Why can’t movies just let us believe vs. trying to explain everything? Midichlorians? Wait, wrong movie.).  eBay has done the same thing – Pierre literally created one of the best business models of my lifetime, but eBay has since mucked it all up.

Anywhooo,  I am still angry at the Wachowskis for the Matrix sequels,  and I was really looking forward to redemption with “Speed Racer”.

Well, it wasn’t The Matrix.  To be fair though, it wasn’t The Matrix Sequels either. 

“Speed Racer” , I’ve got to imagine,  is what taking a hit of acid must be like.  It is an explosion of bright, vivid colors that jump and swirl through the entire movie.  It’s the movie you would make out of Light Brites.   And just like an acid trip,  at some point you’d probably want all the noise and color and movement to stop at some point because you’re getting dizzy and nauseous, but it doesn’t stop.  It just keeps on trucking – over 2 hours of it.   At times it is absolutely beautiful to watch, and at others it’s just bright lights for the sake of bright lights.

The movie actually reminds me a lot of what happened to George Lucas in Star Wars I and II – he got so wrapped up in the magic of CGI and digital filmmaking that the story was secondary.  The Wachowski’s do the same thing here, spending tons of effort on figuring out just how many ways they can display primary colors, and forgetting to tell a good story.

The best part of the whole night for me was when my son and I were leaving the theatre.  We walked out of the dark building into a brilliant North Carolina sunset – awesome hues of orange and red and purple everywhere.  A light breeze pushed the clouds by and stirred up our hair as we walked to the car.  My son looked up at me, and I knew he was happy, and that’s all I needed to know.

What can watching “Speed Racer” teach you about business?

Don’t overdo it.   Remember what’s really important.



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