Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Worst Of All Possible Worlds

In the early sound era, there was a mania for sequelizing and remaking movies; the Wizard of Oz that we know best is something like the fifth or sixth film version, and there was a sequel to King Kong made the same year the first one came out.

In the 50s, movies were often talky and stagey, stuffed with needless filler to pad out the runtime on business that wasn't at all important to the story, and with exposition often delivered in spectacularly clumsy fashion.

In the 60s, movies got incredibly bloated, with studios lavishing hundreds of millions of dollars (adjusted) to fill up the screen with empty spectacle to distract from how boring or stupid the story was.

In the late 60s and 70s, smaller and more independent movies went through a renaissance, but a lot of these were slapdash and amateurish, sacrificing narrative coherency for the director's "vision" (or just a plain ol' inability to tell a story).

In the 90s, movies were aimed increasingly at kids or rather stupid teenagers, sticking rigidly to formulas and keeping everything as stupid and unimaginative as possible.


Is it just me, or does a lot of what Hollywood makes these days combine all of these aspects?

I guess the silver lining is that all of these trends eventually reversed themselves.

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