For the Black Mirror purists out there, the new full-length Netflix movie might take longer to complete than you expect, considering the "Choose Your Own Adventure" format leaves you with several different iterations of the story, depending on which decisions you make.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch launched on the streaming service on Friday and, according to Variety, the film has a grand total of five different endings, along with more than one trillion unique versions of the story.
That may seem overwhelming, but not all of the decisions are critical ones. Yes, many of these choices do alter the fabric of the story itself, but there are others that have fewer consequences, like choosing which cereal the main character has for breakfast early on in the film.
Netflix director of product innovation Carla Engelbrecht said that some of these simple decisions were in order to help users get comfortable with the process of choosing the story. "We want [viewers] to have a successful choice early on," she said.
Depending on your choices, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch can be finished in as little as 40 minutes, though the average viewing takes about 90. The narrative is built to keep viewers from straying too far from the actual story and getting caught in an unnecessary loop. If you get to a point where you're not connected to the actual story of Bandersnatch anymore, the film will give your character an option to essentially do something over, allowing you to take a step or two back and go in a different direction.
With these unique storytelling tools, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch may not be available on all devices. Some older smart TVs with Netflix apps won't be updated for the film due to the pre-viewing requirements. You also won't be able to watch Bandersnatch using Google Chrome or Apple TV, for technical reasons.
"Almost every single Netflix household has a device that can play Bandersnatch," said Netflix vice president of product Todd Yellin.
All in all, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch will likely keep audiences engaged for hours on end, ushering in a new kind of storytelling for Netflix, a company that's become over the years as a pusher of limits and boundaries.0comments
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Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is now streaming on Netflix.