Cut to the chase
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Cut to the chase is a saying that means to get to the point without wasting time.
The phrase originated from early silent films. It was a favorite of, and thought to have been coined by, Hal Roach Sr (January 14, 1892 – November 2, 1992). Films, particularly comedies, often climaxed in chase scenes to add to film time. Some inexperienced screenwriter or director, unsure how to get to the climax or the lack of script to meet time requirements, would just make an abrupt transition, known as a cut. The phrase is unusual in that its common meaning of "Get to the point" is opposite to its logical meaning of "I am completely out of ideas and have ten minutes to fill up. I'll just give them ten minutes of chase."
An earlier version of the phrase (recorded 1880-1940) was Cut to Hecuba. This refers to the practice of shortening matinée performances of Hamlet by cutting the long speeches before the reference to Hecuba in Act II, Scene ii.
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