TopBilled

Why do some classic movie fans bash newer films?

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I've been meaning to ask this for awhile. Why do some people disparage newer films? It's like saying an old train is better than a new train.

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Or a worn out pair of shoes has more value than a pair of new sneakers.

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Certainly some classic films were released in 2018 and some might already have been released this year. Classic does not mean the film has to be made in 1940-whenever. So why is there a bias against the new?

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To answer your question (a) some fans believe older movies have been vindicated by time, and are upset that many people are ignorant of movies before the very recent past (b) some fans either admire the craft of particular classic directors, or the general tone of classic movies.  Among such qualities are greater subtlety, less vulgarity, sometimes more emphasis on women. 

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1 hour ago, skimpole said:

To answer your question (a) some fans believe older movies have been vindicated by time, and are upset that many people are ignorant of movies before the very recent past (b) some fans either admire the craft of particular classic directors, or the general tone of classic movies.  Among such qualities are greater subtlety, less vulgarity, sometimes more emphasis on women. 

and older movies are in touch with the working man's perspective while the newer films cater to the LA/Mulholland drive/brentwood/nyc liberal elitist mindset which is hostile to the traditional Judeo-Christian moral and societal perspective.

:D

that is why a movie like Death Wish cannot be made in today's Hollywood since they view criminals, murderers and rapists as an oppressed minority.

 

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55 minutes ago, TopBilled said:

I've been meaning to ask this for awhile. Why do some people disparage newer films? It's like saying an old train is better than a new train.

Or a stinky old pair of shoes has more value than a pair of new sneakers.

Or that Boris Karloff's "Mummy" was better than Tom Cruise's one.

(Well....okay, we'll give them that.)

that is why a movie like Death Wish cannot be made in today's Hollywood since they view criminals, murderers and rapists as an oppressed minority.

And when Eli Roth tries to remake it, Bruce Willis flops on his big fat face.

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I prefer wholesome movies over a lot of what happens on the screens today. Not sure that means I'm bashing what is new. Somewhere around 1970 or so, I see a declining curve when it comes to movies to fit my desires. If I want sex, violence, and profanity, there is always the TV news.

Michael Rennie was born 3 years after my Grandma. I am my Grandmother's Grandson.

That said TopBilled, I am fond of all 3 TCM #40 Challenges. They all seem to be progressive with more modern titles. That is so not me, but I really do like all of them. Kind of hope to see a more conservative list soon.

I love the old train!

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I rarely bash a newer film since I rarely see newer films.    E.g. if I watch 200 films a year,  only around 10 (if that) will be from the 21st century.    

But I will 'challenge' people that claim to be really into film that have only seen a handful of films made before they were born.     Often these people will make statements like 'this is the best film ever made in this genre';  but they have a very uninformed opinion since they haven't seen any 'older' films in that genre.

I guess my overall point is that I don't have much respect for uninformed opinions.    Instead be open about when your uninformed (like I am as it relates to newer films).     E.g.  there was a post a few days back about favorite-Bette-Davis films.      One user replied that they had only seen a handful of Davis films and out of that these were the ones they liked,  but that they had a lot of 'homework' to do.   I loved that reply. 

Everyone is uninformed in many areas; I say own-that.

 

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My life wouldn't last long enough to start and finish a list of reasons to answer this one. Thy name is legion :(

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I can't really explain it, as I don't share that sentiment, but I can try. The industry is in a sad state at the moment, and it may never recover to anything like what it once was even 15-20 years ago, let alone whichever older film era one prefers. The nature of entertainment may move further away from film as technology progresses and how people spend their leisure time continues to change, with the current trends of SFX overload, family-film pablum, and micro-niche-appeal indies/SVOD growing even more inescapable. 

My personal favorite decades for films are, in order, the 70's, 80's, 60's, and 90's. Anyone familiar with my posts knows that I also enjoy films from the decades before and after those, but not as much. Of the hundreds of DVDs and Blu-rays on my shelves 3/5th's are from after 1970, so the majority are not from the "classic" era. 

All that being said, I still find movies from each year that I like, some a great deal, and in a variety of genres. I understand some people are put off or offended by sex/nudity, dirty words, and violence, both minor and graphic. And all of these things are more prevalent in modern films, although not as ubiquitous as some naysayers profess. You'll find much more graphic material on a regular basis in movies from the 70's and 80's than you will now. However, if people wish to avoid things of that nature, classic films are more reliably absent of those aspects.

And some people prefer the social structures on display in older films, a mythologized view of when things "were right in the world." Modern films reassert where we are, while older films take you away to the way you wish they were. The uglier aspects of life were usually hidden away due to the Production Code. And many viewers prefer things the way they were when they themselves were a child, as the world seemed to make more sense then, not realizing that the reason was because they were a child and were unaware of those more-unsavory aspects for the most part. So, many viewers like visiting those older times via classic films, and it serves as a sort of fantasy/wish-fulfillment/escapism from the worries and uncertainties of the modern life. These viewers would naturally be less open to watching or enjoying modern films. These people often (but not always) seem to fall into conservative political viewpoints, and they see their preferred worldview in classic films more than modern.

And then there are those who just aesthetically like the older film style, the B&W cinematography, or the candy-colored Technicolor, the stage-trained diction, and everyone wearing a suit or a dress, with simple stories told simply and straightforwardly, with plots (and editing) easily followed from point A to point B to point C. Older films adhere much more closely to a stage approach to drama, while later films, inspired by the previous generations of movies as well as arthouse innovation, became more visually oriented and looked to explore the boundaries of visual storytelling. Of course that can be taken to extremes, with a bunch of visual "noise" on screen holding little to no emotional weight, just as the earliest films were often visually dull, stage-y bores with no visual verve at all, until Griffith came along and kicked 'em in the pants. In the end, many viewers like the pacing, editing, scoring and the look of classic films over many of the stylistic trends prevalent now.

So I can understand where people are coming from with their dislike of either new films or old films. But I ain't one of 'em, as I find stuff to like (and dislike) in them all.

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1 hour ago, NipkowDisc said:

and older movies are in touch with the working man's perspective while the newer films cater to the LA/Mulholland drive/brentwood/nyc liberal elitist mindset which is hostile to the traditional Judeo-Christian moral and societal perspective.

:D

that is why a movie like Death Wish cannot be made in today's Hollywood since they view criminals, murderers and rapists as an oppressed minority.

 

I thought Death Wish was remade just last year.

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People tend to remember things with rose colored glasses. They remember the great and fun things. The boring and mundane tends to be forgotten. For example: Many film fans would consider Its a Wonderful Life (1946), a fine film....except it bombed at the box office in its day. Maybe some of today's bombs might find an audience in the future.

Its the same with athletes. The star who was great long ago will always be larger than life. The star today is just a person. Those movies have had 50 - 100 years to build a reputation. We know about the whole careers of the actors. And during the studio system, the studios did a much better job building up their actors.

 

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1 hour ago, LawrenceA said:

And some people prefer the social structures on display in older films, a mythologized view of when things "were right in the world." Modern films reassert where we are, while older films take you away to the way you wish they were. The uglier aspects of life were usually hidden away due to the Production Code. And many viewers prefer things the way they were when they themselves were a child, as the world seemed to make more sense then, not realizing that the reason was because they were a child and were unaware of those more-unsavory aspects for the most part. So, many viewers like visiting those older times via classic films, and it serves as a sort of fantasy/wish-fulfillment/escapism from the worries and uncertainties of the modern life. These viewers would naturally be less open to watching or enjoying modern films. These people often (but not always) seem to fall into conservative political viewpoints, and they see their preferred worldview in classic films more than modern.

Excellent post. Especially the highlighted part in the above quoted paragraph.

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2 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

until Griffith came along and kicked 'em in the pants.

My first uneducated guess might be Andy (A Face In The Crowd) Griffith. Is that what you mean?

I agree with TopBilled. Excellent post. I have to agree with the whole thing as it applies to myself. Only recently have I moved to a more liberal point of view. I am low income and some conservatives could care less.

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In a way, I am partway guilty of this. The thing is, and I really can't disguise it well, I definitely do prefer a movie that has been around a while. It also shows in showing how gung-ho I usually am for watching any classic, or even films up through the 90s, but after that I become very selective and guarded about which ones to watch. (But then again, I just recently tackled several Fox films from the 70s-80s, and I was mortified by one scene of violence in one of them [Taps from 1981], so I guess I can be a bit guarded even with those)

Most of my favorite movie stars worked years ago, and most of them today are either long gone or elderly or not in vogue anymore.

There is also some issue where it is far nicer for me to slip into a film with very little hype and let it work its spell over me, rather than to go for something brand new which has all sorts of preconceived expectations. 

But yet, I still watch some recent films, hoping for that emotional clicking point. All's not lost. But one just has to be careful, I think.

PS, Michael, regarding the programming challenge, most of the newer titles on my schedule reflect a certain reflection as most are intimate titles that could have been made with only some minor changes in earlier times. Plus some of them come with names long familiar to audiences since the 50s and 60s.

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1 hour ago, TopBilled said:

Excellent post. Especially the highlighted part in the above quoted paragraph.

agree

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2 hours ago, GGGGerald said:

People tend to remember things with rose colored glasses.

 

I think that is a large part of it.

Another factor, in my opinion, is the increasing amount of remakes we see. I don’t mind a good remake/reboot and I think there is plenty of room to better an action movie with newer effects, but being inundated with the same formulaic plot can get tiresome. I fell into this group with A Star Is Born. Three remakes was just too many for me. I admire the performances of the actors but, as much as I profess to support recycling, I couldn’t stomach the underlying boilerplate. 

And on that note, I offer you all some good-humored snark: 

 

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This is a very interesting topic. I love classic films. I can't pinpoint the reason why, but I know both of my parents were born in 1932 and I've always been interested in things from their eras.

I like current films, as well, but that feeling of nostalgia while watching them is not there and I don't have the desire to see many of them.

I often have wondered: if I was born during the same time my parents were (hypothetically, of course!), would I still love these classic films as much, or would I feel more indifferent about them as I do with current films because I'm no longer associating them with another time or place? Hmmm...🤔

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I've been getting a kick recently exploring the transitional period between the end of the studio system combined with the end of the MPPC and how wild the independently produced films got, horror, thriller, exploitation, blaxploitation, sexploitation, etc., etc. The 60s is a decade that gets neglected, the product varies in quality, isn't as polished as the studio classics, and has rarely seen titles because of their anything goes nature. 

The very real threat of nuclear annihilation, (hell I remember doing the air raid drills in school hiding under our desks, as is that was sufficient to prevent vaporization, lol). This is what that classic mentality brought us too, and you know what, our generation said f-u to all that crap, call it a release from the idiots and the mentalities that got us to that point. No wonder we nuked open the Pandora's Box and if it felt good we did it, had free love, rocked out, smoked weed, made some of the most creative films and music dropped acid, not saying it all turned out great, but it's never going back to the uptight way it was before.

So my favorite decades for film would be the , 50s, 60s, 70's, and 90's, then late 40s and 80s. I'm also finding more and more quality cable miniseries that are becoming quite competitive with film in quality, and even exceeding the theater format by being able to immerse the viewer in a more complex story than in the traditional format that is now seeming at times too streamlined.  

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1 hour ago, Michael Rennie said:

My first uneducated guess might be Andy (Face In The Crowd) Griffith. Is that what you mean?

I think he meant D.W. Griffith?

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31 minutes ago, CinemaInternational said:

PS, Michael, regarding the programming challenge, most of the newer titles on my schedule reflect a certain reflection as most are intimate titles that could have been made with only some minor changes in earlier times. Plus some of them come with names long familiar to audiences since the 50s and 60s.

I sort of wanted to make a comment outside of the programming challenge thread. Making a comment inside the thread could make me come off as a know-it-all, and that couldn't be more distant from the truth. Plus, a little shout-out. I would be out of my comfort zone trying to create my own challenge, but will vote.

Sometimes, I love to see the "stuff" from the past. That too applies a certain comfort level. For a guy who is not a cook, I love the old kitchens.

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4 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Excellent post. Especially the highlighted part in the above quoted paragraph.

Might explain the popularity of Superheroes, Anime and other animated films today. They can take you to outer space, underwater worlds, or a place where people can fly around and have super powers.

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What's fascinating to me is, if a film is made the modern way, some will say they like the old style better. Then when they try to make a movie or series with an older style plot, some will say : Its not as good as the old one ! It seems producers are not allowed to make old style films.

I feel this at times can paint people into a corner. There aren't anymore films being produced in the  1950's or 60's or any other past decade. I feel if one is going to complain about modern films, they should offer a solution. State what they would rather see. Because then as now, producers will give the public exactly what they want to pay for.

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2 hours ago, HomeCinemaNerd said:

I think that is a large part of it.

Another factor, in my opinion, is the increasing amount of remakes we see. I don’t mind a good remake/reboot and I think there is plenty of room to better an action movie with newer effects, but being inundated with the same formulaic plot can get tiresome. I fell into this group with A Star Is Born. Three remakes was just too many for me. I admire the performances of the actors but, as much as I profess to support recycling, I couldn’t stomach the underlying boilerplate. 

And on that note, I offer you all some good-humored snark: 

 

Ahh, but people actually supported the film. It did well at the box office as well as at the award shows. When people vote with their dollars, they can get what they want.

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reminds me of the old joke

"Say, d'ye know the difference between last year's Miss America winner and a kangaroo?"

"No. What?"

"Whew...you must have some really strange dates"

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