Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Teens Are Making Short Cinematic Videos on TikTok

Brad Esposito, Pedestrian:

The genres of TikTok become quickly apparent to anyone who spends upwards of 30 minutes scrolling on the app. In many ways, it’s just a regurgitation of what already works: prank videos, funny skits, a few lingering lip-sync efforts, still holding on to what the app used to be.

But Cinematic TikToks have arrived somewhat rapidly, tapping into the innate pop culture knowledge of teenagers everywhere. They are a generation that has spent years with access to every piece of content imaginable. That has left a mark, one they farm within themselves to create content that often even they can’t explain. It’s a feeling, it’s a vibe. It reminds them of someone else’s work, or a movie they saw. They don’t know what to call it. It just is.

It’s been said before, but TikTok is very much the spiritual successor to Vine. It’s fascinating to see the creative output encouraged by the thirty second maximum video length.