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View Diary: Are old movies doomed to obscurity? (288 comments)

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  •  I'm an "elder" millennial approaching 30 (4+ / 0-)

    so maybe my perspective is different than the younger  of the generation who are neck-deep in social media, but to me the attitude and taste you identify here are just plain stupidity.  

    I do find a lot of classics hopelessly antiquated - I did enjoy some 1930s-1940s stuff when I was little and saw it on broadcast TV, but since then I just can't stomach the hammy performances of film before the 1950s, and most of even that decade is just too ridiculous.  Bogart is still cool, IMHO, but Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney seem like clowns to me.

    But if these kids are bored by The Godfather I & II, Chinatown, Goodfellas, The Silence of the Lambs, Letters from Iwo Jima, Unforgiven, Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, The Return of the Jedi, A Clockwork Orange, Trainspotting, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Reservoir Dogs, etc. etc. - they're not pioneers of a new aesthetic, they're just trendy, airheaded morons who need to be told what they like by studios who will soon be remaking the same films on a perpetual basis (this will literally happen - there will be studios whose sole output is continuous remakes of the same properties).  You're correct to analogize it to fashion, since that seems to be how they're treating it.

    It's not like I grew up relating to the content of Martin Scorsese movies - they take place mainly in the '60s and '70s in New York among Italian-Americans, and I grew up in coastal suburban Southern California surrounded by WASP surfers while my parents grew up in suburban Michigan, so I'm about a century removed from the cultural basis of those movies.  And yet because they're so alive, so vigorous, so immediate, they hold power that is undeniable and ultimately very easy to become enthralled by.  Anyone who doesn't get that just has no balls and no heart - although given the music of millennials, that might actually be the case.

    The irony here is that the cliche is supposed to be that old farts like me (I'm approaching the cutoff point of youth) are supposed to complain that kids are too rowdy, too lively, too creative and disrespectful, their music too rough, but I don't see that being a real problem in people younger than me.  Quite the opposite.  They don't like the music of the past few decades because it's too lively for them, too expressive, etc.  The movies have too much content and real feeling.  It's like the electronicization of their social lives has turned them into limp, pallid pseudo-beings who flinch in the face of real experience or even entertainment that remotely resembles real experience.

    It's really pathetic, because they're basically Owned.  Trivia completely under the control of the companies that feed them like farm animals is what they consider significant.  "Did you see this month's remake of The Hulk?"  "No, I'm waiting till next month."  "Damn, they should really start making these remakes weekly instead of monthly, I'm tired of waiting."  "Yeah, but I think next month's will be cool - I hear they're adding 0.002% more pixels to 5% of the frames.  Should be awesome!"  Seriously - movie franchises will cease to be franchises and become the business themselves.  Spiderman Inc.  Subscribe to the latest updates to the film, which includes periodic versioning that significantly changes the look and actors to meet current fashion.  

    It's a big damn irony, but I suppose it's what naturally comes after a Classic Era in anything - the people who come later seem like gutless wonders with no imagination: The reverse of the WW2-boomer generation gap that was afflicted with the craziness and disordered creativity of what followed.  Now we have to deal with the fact that kids are spineless.

    "I'm going to rub your faces in things you try to avoid." - Muad'Dib

    by Troubadour on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:58:28 PM PDT

    •  Remakes (2+ / 0-)
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      Only Needs a Beat, pico

      Note: I'm at the very top range of millennial. Some don't even count me as such.

      It's the same logic as comic companies. Why repeat the same stories are x years? Because the original audience who watched it isn't going to watch it again. Of course comic book companies didn't count on kids reading comics until they were grown ups. The same applies here.

      We were in the demo that had the last Spiderman, NOT the target demo for this one. They don't care about people our age for this film and for people younger it hasn't happened.

      And about music, Sullivan linked to something a while back that analyzed pop music. In the last couple decades pop music has become more complicated. It's not the simple chords of the 60s. It incorporates more complicated arrangements and a lot more minors for instance. Objectively speaking pop is more complex now than it has been in the past.

      Maybe that doesn't mean the lyrics are any better (though I personally think the pop played when I'm 30 is better than the pop that was played when I was 20) but pop listener of today is accustomed to listening to more demanding music than the listener of the past.

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