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You ever see a classic film and think


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this is just perfect. I mean wonderful filmmaking. Why the heck can't they do anything like this today. I got that feeling after watching ball of fire the other night. And the same feeling after watching the apartment. Any classic films you watch that just make you dumbfounded with their brilliance.

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> {quote:title=aged-in-wood wrote: }{quote}Why the heck can't they do anything like this today.

Because the movie industry is now run by an army of bean counters, not movie lovers as was the case during the golden age of Hollywood.

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There is no evidence to support that the movie industry wasn't run by bean counters and instead movie lovers during the studio era. In fact most evidence points in the other direction. During the studio era studio bosses had a lot more power and their main reasons for using this power was to ensure profits.

 

Actors were under contract and since the studio had to pay them regardless, many actors were placed into roles that didn't suit them. In most cases directors and producers couldn't get anyone they wanted for a part but instead had to use the actors under contract with the studio. This clearly had an impact over quality.

 

During the 30s a lot of movies were low budget programmers using the same character actors and plots over and over again.

 

I'm a major fan studio era movies but it wasn't because studio bosses like Jack Warner care more about art than money. Sorry, that just doesn't add up.

 

 

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Hal Wallis? Arthur Freed? Irving Thalberg? Darryl F. Zanuck? Louis B. Mayer? Samuel Goldwyn? Walter Mirisch? You telling me these people weren't movie lovers? You mentioned Jack Warner but I think I've just given . . .uh . . .evidence to show he is perhaps an exception to the rule. These people made movies because they loved being in the movie business. Most executives at studios who are greenlighting movies these days have never even heard of the people I've mentioned above. And most of them wouldn't know the difference between a klieg light & an over-the-shoulder medium shot. They didn't go to film school, they all have business degrees from Harvard. Same thing happened in the music industry (which is also why it sucks now)--they're both small branches of larger corporations run by (I'll say it again) beancounters.

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I'll take ANYTHING from the 40's and 50's over today's offerings.

Why did airlines work perfectly back then...in style! Have you flown lately? Nightmarish!

Cars? Who wouldn't want a '57 Chevy? Or do you like Toyota?

Clothes...better 50 years ago.

Hollywood in the 50's...beautiful! I was there. Today? A dangerous ghetto.

Only thing better today: medical science.

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> {quote:title=Ascotrudgeracer wrote:}{quote}I'll take ANYTHING from the 40's and 50's over today's offerings.

> Why did airlines work perfectly back then...in style! Have you flown lately? Nightmarish!

> Cars? Who wouldn't want a '57 Chevy? Or do you like Toyota?

> Clothes...better 50 years ago.

> Hollywood in the 50's...beautiful! I was there. Today? A dangerous ghetto.

> Only thing better today: medical science.

Well Doug, being a retired airline employee and a gearhead(as you know), I'll attempt to answer two of those questions you posed here:

 

Why did the airlines "work perfectly back then", you ask? Well, that was because "back then" the airline industry was government regulated, and so each ailines' route system was protected. However, as you might ALSO remember, purchasing an airline ticket would usually cost the equivalent of a month's salary or more, whereas in today deregulated and "cut-throat" competitive airline industry it takes perhaps a week's salary to purchase an airline ticket and to fly the same distance. Ya see, the public WANTED the airlines to be of the "K-Mart/Target Variety" and NOT the, lets say, "Neiman-Marcus Variety", so that EVERYONE wearing a "I'm with Stupid" tank-top and flip flops(instead of a Brooks Brothers suit like they used to do)could fly the Friendly Skies instead of having to take the BUS!

 

And re your '57 Chevy question, I dare say that the 2011 Corvette is FAR superior in both out-and-out horsepower and handling than a 1957 Corvette is, AND is a lot safer to drive ALSO, though I might admit that the '57 Vette could be more "classically styled" than is the 2011 model, though even that one isn't at all "ugly".

 

 

(...I'll leave it to somebody else to tackle those other questions of yours, ol' buddy!) ;)

 

 

Oh sorry, I forgot to add something about your "Hollywood" observation.

 

 

Yep, Hollywood perhaps used to be a much more "glamorous" place "back then", BUT I have to say that in the last decade or so, the City of L.A. HAS spruced the place up quite a bit, and so many parts of Hollywood are no longer the "ghetto" that you may remember now that you're sittin' in the tundra of North Dakota!

 

 

(...sorry, ol' buddy...I just couldn't resist that "tundra' line there...and no, of course I'm NOT talkin' about a TOYOTA "Tundra" pickup truck here!)

 

Edited by: Dargo on Oct 7, 2011 2:07 PM

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I never said that studio heads were not movie lovers, but only that profit was just as important, if not more important, than making movies for art sake. In other words studios had to make a profit to stay in business just like any other business. My favorite studio of the golden era is WB. i.e. Jack was able to back some great movies even if his main motive for doing so was making money.

 

Anyhow we can agree to disagree. I just feel the POV you appear to have is a romanticized POV. As for why movies are made the way they are today; just like with music the taste of the people (fans) have changed. The makers of said product are just selling what the people want.

 

As a classic movie fan and lover of jazz music I understand that my tastes are much different than your average American 18 - 50 year old. This is why I mostly enjoy movies and music from a by-gone era. Where we appear to different is I don't fault the todays makers of these products. Instead if anyone is to blame for the "crap" bring made today it is the people who want and thus demand this crap.

 

 

 

 

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> {quote:title=jamesjazzguitar wrote:}{quote}

> Instead if anyone is to blame for the "crap" bring made today it is the people who want and thus demand this crap.

>

Yep james, it's like I was sayin' down below there...people today want "cheap", NOT "good".

 

(...of course, I was referrin' to airline travel, but basically the very same premise would apply, ya know!;) :^0

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Gotta disagree with the dargo guy. Maybe in the capacity that he worked for the airline and automobile industry he saw flaws but this was not the opinion of a consumer. Just a **** off employee so of course his opinion is gonna be negative. I think the old cars had better styling and design than the newer ones. So the new ones have better handling. Well thats good if people are always in a hurry like they seem today, but back then not so much so you didn't need better handling because people took their dang time. Any time period has flaws but how the common masses function and live in spite of those flaws is what matters. Back then they at least tried to take care of them selves and have some decorum. It seems like today they've just given up in all matters of life and society.

 

Any way I think this post has gotten away from its original intent. I just wanted to celebrate love of cinema, not merit of time period. Whatever.

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I went back to the original post and it has this sentence "Why the heck can't they do anything like this today" so clearly there was an intent to celebrate one time period (studio era?) over another time period (today).

 

I also see way too broad of a bush being used here. i.e. use of the the term 'them' as if an entire generation all think the same. Yea, were we ALL hippies? NO. So it is just as silly to say the current generation all think the same and have no taste or decorum.

 

As for watching a movie and saying to oneself; man that movie really moved me. The one that did it for me and still does is The Petrifried Forest. Such an intellegent and wity screenplay and with the great actors Howard, Davis and Bogie.

 

 

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Interesting that this has hit the message boards. Just a couple weeks ago, I posted a blog about the same thing on The Classic Film Union:

 

http://fan.tcm.com/_The-Movies-I-Lost-Sleep-Over/blog/5188304/66470.html

 

Check it out.

 

And to answer your question, Hollywood is a machine. A money making Machine nowadays. They bang them out like hot cakes out there. It's disgusting to see what America has come to.

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*( . . . Any classic films you watch that just make you dumbfounded with their brilliance.)*

 

Hi aged-in-wood,

 

 

Below are SOME of the Classics that, as you put it, *" ... made me dumbfounded with their brilliance."*

(I realize that *'EVITA'* was filmed in 1996, but I enjoyed the Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber & the lyrics by Tim Rice . . .)

There are 100's of other Classics that warrant recognition, but I didn't want to 'bog' down this thread . . . too much!

 

 

Regarding the First on my List, *'Nanook of the North' (1922) (Silent),* I just wanted to say that I have always been in *'AWE'* with the filming of this Silent, which took place in the Canadian Arctic, because of the year and location.

 

*Google *states the following . . .

 

*(. . .As the first nonfiction work of its scale, Nanook of the North was ground-breaking cinema. It captured an exotic culture (that is, Indigenous and considered exotic to non-Inuit peoples) in a remote location, rather than a facsimile of reality using actors and props on a studio set. Traditional Inuit methods of hunting, fishing, igloo-building, and other customs were shown with accuracy, and the compelling story of a man and his family struggling against nature met with great success in North America and abroad.)*

 

 

The Great Classics have always left me feeling as though I had just been a part of their Magnificent Scenerio ...

 

 

Nanook of the North (1922) Silent

The Last Laugh (1924) Silent

Dracula (1931)

Alice in Wonderland (1933)

Lost Horizon (1937)

Wuthering Heights (1939)

Gone with the Wind (1939)

Wizard of OZ (1939)

 

 

Grapes of Wrath (1940)

Sunset Boulevard (1950)

My Cousin Rachel (1952)

Rear Window (1954)

The Ten Commandments (1956)

The Sound of Music (1965)

Evita (1996)

 

 

 

 

 

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