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No More Classics On DVDs..What The Hey???????


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It sounds like a doom-and-gloom article, I wouldn't pay attention. They're releasing

a Claudette Colbert and Rita Hayworth box set this year---in THIS economy.

 

By the way, I think the scariest thing written in that article was calling

Frank Borzage a "cult director". :0

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What this article claims is sadly all very true. Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable, Jimmy Cagney, James Stewart, Cary Grant, Errol Flynn, John Wayne, Spencer Tracy, Bettie Davis, Judy Garland, Rita Hayworth, Doris Day, Marilyn Monroe.Etc Yes, even Elvis. These are names that have always been around. That's why they became Icons. I mean when I was a Kid they used to have hours of programming on Saturday and Sunday afternoons showcasing these Stars weekly. There was an Errol Flynn Theater, Bogart Theater, John Wayne Theater etc. Someone was always running an Elvis movie.

 

Today, that programming no longer exists. Television has completely turned it's back on these films, except for TCM. Preferring to run endless idiotic infomercials about phony Male enhancement products, Breast creams, and scores of reality show garbage. Plus total trash like half-hour adds for the latest Girls Gone Wild DVD, and what's worse droves of imitators. Classic TV series are also disappearing from the airwaves and fading from public memory. For God's sake, 250 channels and virtually nothing of quality or good taste is to be had. To be honest, with that many stations I don't see how any channel can get ratings or even stay in business for long. It's completely insane.

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Okay, color me confused.

 

Warner Brothers is spending some major bucks on the restorations of their tent pole classics, *The Wizard of Oz* and *Gone With the Wind*.

 

George Feltenstein is over at the HTF twice a year announcing upcoming classics on DVD.

 

Mike Schlesinger is working with Sony to get more of their classics restored and on DVD.

 

Fox is producing DVD box sets like *Ford at Fox* and *Murnau at Fox* and even Paramount, PARAMOUNT, has a new guy in home video and is releasing more of their classic films on DVD.

 

The only studio still in the dark is Universal.

 

And yet, the studios are abandoning the DVD market for classic films.

 

Color me confused.

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Cutter...if you're confused, then I am plain outta my mind.

 

See, this is why I LOVE TCM and like the Message Board. TCM loves classic films. Everything they do shows that love (as we saw first-hand during our trip to Atlanta). They showcase films from silents up to the ("dreaded") modern film (whatever year "classics" end). Where else can film lovers go to see these films uncut and uninterrupted. There are no more retro houses. Having DVDs would support this time period of film history. But if they stop manufacturing the DVDs...we still have TCM to create our own library.

 

I like the Message Board becuz of folks' expressing their love for these grand ol' classics. Essays, kibbitzing, in-depth conversations, camaraderie all in the quest of finding like-minded people. Oh yeah, the hoops FrankGrimes makes some of us jump through.

 

Again...I was just passing along info. You can count the number of times I start a thread. This was not meant to sound out the alarm like Welles' "War of the Worlds."

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Izcutter,

 

I don't know if this is correct or not, but I was told that Fox had actually planned to come out with a Raoul Walsh/Howard Hawks collection. But Murnau-Borzage didn't sell very well, and so those plans were shelved. Really what did they expect putting out a great big giant expensive box-set like that which nobody could afford? Not offering any of the titles by themselves, or in smaller collections.

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*Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable, Jimmy Cagney, James Stewart, Cary Grant, Errol Flynn, John Wayne, Spencer Tracy, Bettie Davis, Judy Garland, Rita Hayworth, Doris Day, Marilyn Monroe.Etc Yes, even Elvis. These are names that have always been around. That's why they became Icons. I mean when I was a Kid they used to have hours of programming on Saturday and Sunday afternoons showcasing these Stars weekly. There was an Errol Flynn Theater, Bogart Theater, John Wayne Theater etc.*

 

Jeffrey,

 

I don't know how old you are. I suspect you are a few years younger than me, I'm in the mid-century modern phase of my life (early 50s).

 

I discovered classic movies in the mid-1960s when classic films were getting revived and re-evaluated by critics not only here in America but overseas as well. Movies that had been considered bad box office were now being hailed as classics. B films and cult directors were suddenly in vogue. Revival theaters and art houses played classic movies on the big screen.

 

Everyone knew the stars because they were on television shows. Not just variety shows and Johnny Carson but the western serials and the crime dramas. They were still working. The images of Bogart, Cagney, etc were everywhere because in the early 1970s, pop culture suddenly latched onto 1930s fashion, hair styles, etc.

 

It's what happens every few years. A new craze comes along. A few years ago, the 1970s were suddenly fashionable again, then the 1980s. Now, it's the *Mad Men* era of the early 1960s and mid-century modern architecture.

 

But, if you live long enough, as we have, you learn that culture, especially pop culture doesn't stand still. It evolves. The revival and art houses have mostly closed due to the home video revolution.

 

Now there is the digital revolution. As I get older, time and technology move faster than ever before in my life. And I suspect that's how it was for my parents and my grandparents.

 

The stars that were important to us have been overshadowed by the stars of today's generation because that's cultural evolution whether we like it or not. My grandparent's taste in shows like *Your Hit Parade* gave way to my parents and their love for Elvis and rock and roll. That evolved into shows like *Hullabaloo* and various popular singers like Glen Campbell and Johnny Cash having their own variety hours.

 

*The Smothers Brothers* gave birth to *Saturday Night Live* and *MadTV* and John Stewart and Stephen Colbert.

 

By passing on our love of classic film, we help it to endure. Today's generation knows who Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn, James Dean and countless others from classic films because of their iconic look and the fact that it is still marketed.

 

Those stars have staying power even if it isn't the packaging of our youth. Those various star theater nights you mentioned are available on TCM just under different names.

 

There are studios, even in the face of doomsday articles like the one Cinemaven posted here for us, who value their film libraries and are doing the best they can to make it available.

 

The content remains the same, only the packaging has changed.

 

But every generation can tell that story. Not just us.

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I think also the problem is that the newer generation - people under 30 years of age may simply not be interested in movies between the 1920's - 1940's. There are some that likes the golden age of classic movies but they are in the minority. This probually explains the decline in older classic movie sales.

 

People in the 50 - 80 year old age group still think that the same number of people are still around that likes the golden age of classics when they were younger.

 

It will be soon be 2010 and look at the world through the eyes of someone under 30.

 

Seen the commercials for the latest movies, a comedy about selling cars (that movie will lead to brain rot), to "Gamer" and to alien segregation in "District 9". Do you think that people who likes these types of movies would like "The Big Parade"?

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hamradio,

 

In other words what you are saying is that the younger generation has almost zero idea of what constitutes a good let alone truly great movie, or even a good Television series for that matter.

 

As for that new Alien Movie District 9 or what ever it is called, the adds look like a thinly disguised and slightly re-worked remake of V to me!

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I think that was meant for very obscure classic films. I'm still waiting for Wyler's "Wuthering Heights" to be released on a decent DVD format, and what about "Our Dancing Daughters" that brought Joan Crawford to international fame. It's sad that a crappy film like Transformers gets a six disc special edition while a great film like The African Queen gets the heave-ho from the market shelves because younger audiences have no clue who Katharine Hepburn is - or John Huston.

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*In other words what you are saying is that the younger generation has almost zero idea of what constitutes a good let alone truly great movie, or even a good Television series for that matter.*

 

Of course they do. They also are capable of watching and producing good television, good movies and good music, just as you and I did when we were younger and enjoying those things that our parents thought had no value, no substance and no relevance.

 

From that era came many now classic films from the 1970s, some great music and even some worthwhile television (especially in the form of movie-of-the-weeks and miniseries as well as PBS specials).

 

Then, of course, there's disco and punk rock. Not my cup of tea, but I can truthfully say there is some of it I enjoy (especially X).

 

There are good actors working today who got their start a few years ago just as there are those who got their start thirty and forty years ago. Bette Davis, Gregory Peck, John Wayne and others would sit down with Johnny Carson and talk about the young actors that they thought had the "right stuff" and would be acting for years to come. They were proud to pass the baton to the next generation because they realized that film, like the rest of the arts, does not stay stationary. It never stops changing, growing, evolving.

 

If you look at every decade of film or music, you can chart the changes in America from our move from an agrarian society to an urban society, from our transformation from the silents to the talkies, from the Depression to the War Years to the Cold War to the counter-culture and beyond. Subjects that mattered to us, that we thought were important as well as fashion, art, and all the rest. It's all documented in the movies we love.

 

The entertainment being produced today may not be your cup of tea but to denigrate an entire generation just because you don't like the movies, music or television being produced makes you sound like a cranky, old, mean-spirited man, which over the years of corresponding with you I've never thought of you as.

 

Message was edited by: lzcutter for punctuation

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PTAndersonFan,

 

 

They must have something bigger in mind than just a Warner Archive release planned for OUR DANCING DAUGHTERS/OUR MODERN MAIDENS? Because both features would probably have been included in the Crawford pack coming out next week if they hadn't.

 

Incidentally, Anita Page always claimed DAUGHTERS made her a Star, not Joan and that it was her movie. Vintage reviews seem to back her up on this matter.

 

However, Warner Archive surprised everyone as THE PATSY is now listed for Pre-order. Rather a shocker, as I expected it to be part of a King Vidor box set collection with THE BIG PARADE, THE CROWD, SHOW PEOPLE, and other films next year.

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Lynn,

 

Sure there are good movies, TV shows, and otherwise quality entertainment still being made today, but it is few and far between. Sorry, but that is how I feel. As for my age, I am approximately 10 years younger than you are.

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*Sure there are good movies, and quality entertainment still being made today, but it is few and far between. Sorry, but that is how I feel. As for my age, I am approximately 10 years younger than you are.*

 

And I can almost guarantee you that our parents thought the same thing you do. It's a natural progression as we get older. The things that matter to us mean less to the generations that follow us.

 

Thus it has always been, thus it will always be.

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Lynn,

 

Well, lets use this analogy. Take this in reverse. Just Imagine a group of young people in their early 20's back in the late 50's or early 60's turning on the Radio and hearing a bunch of music from today. Hip-Hop and the like being played. Now, what would their reaction be? They probably would think that they had all died and went to Hell!

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*Well, lets use this analogy. Take this in reverse. Just Imagine a group of young people in their early 20's back in the late 50's or early 60's turning on the Radio and hearing a bunch of music from today. Hip-Hop and the like being played. Now, what would their reaction be? They probably would think that they had all died and went to Hell!*

 

Jeffrey,

 

You could be right.

 

But you are mixing apples and oranges.

 

Taking that same group from the late 1950s/early 1960s and listening to the punk rock and disco of our era often had the same affect you are attributing to them listening to today's music.

 

And that's not the point. We are talking about how those art forms grow and evolve over the years.

 

We are getting older and the art forms that mattered to us don't have the same resonance with today's generation. But that's history and that's progress.

 

We aren't the first generation that it happened to (though we might like to think that) and we won't be the last.

 

This current generation will go through the same thing we are in about twenty-five years or so. And they won't like any more than we do.

 

Message was edited by: lzcutter because articles are important. Really.

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*Err, not so much Generation, as Degeneration. Of all society.*

 

But that's not the fault of today's generation. We (all of society, not us on the message boards) all played a hand in the permissive, anything goes, celebrity cult world we now find ourselves in.

 

You can trace it's roots back to the counter culture of the 1960s and everything since.

 

This one we cannot blame on today's youth.

 

We have seen the enemy and he is us as Pogo used to say.

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HollywoodGolightly wrote:

<< Last time she was over, we watched 17 Again >>

 

Lol, well thats a movie most all of us could relate to, especially us "older" folks. I mean who wouldn't want to be 17 again.

 

Time is flying much too fast for me, I could have sworn I just got out of high school (early 1970's) sigh

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