45365 is a documentary that was at Full Frame but I never got a chance to watch it. This week it’s been on Hulu for free, which I’m very excited about (but today is the last day so watch it now). But for the film itself, I thought it was great. It’s very Cinema Verite, so I can understand why some people didn’t like it. There’s no narration, no formal interviews; just an amazing portrait capturing an entire small town (45365 is the zip code of Sydney, OH).
Now for the business side of the film being on Hulu. As I said, this makes me very excited. SnagFilms, a video sharing site designed soley for documentaries, has their watermark on the whole film. I’m glad to see they’re growing, and I’m also glad to see they’ve joined with Hulu. I watched a film on SnagFilms once and their player wanted to make me gouge my eyes out, it was the worst thing ever. The ads would play and then send you to a different point in the movie, and then you couldn’t go back to where you were without watching more ads. So painful. I hope they’ve done some serious changes to it. But at least this is on Hulu, which on the opposite end I think is one of the best online players, even better than Netflix.
So I’m curious as to what the distribution deal is, because it was on Hulu for a week. SnagFilms says it’s part of a series to watch a film a week for free before it goes to TV of Theater (I’m guessing TV). I’m glad Hulu has been embracing documentaries (Crawford premiered on Hulu a few months ago). 45365 has been in the top banner all week. It’s gotten hundreds of comments and I’m sure thousands of views. This is a film that probably wouldn’t have worked too well in a theater, but now it’s online for free and ad supported (most of the ads were for a Honda documentary series) and tons of people are seeing it who probably would have never heard of it had it not been for SnagFilms, Hulu, and of course this new-fangled internet distribution model.