Classic Hollywood

Culture Warrior

Twelve years ago, the western and the musical, two genres that were incredibly successful during Hollywood’s heyday, had been considered long dead with no hopes of a revival on the horizon. After all, why would either of these genres make a comeback? The western is a remnant of a sense of American cultural imperialism and pre-Howard Zinn history-writing long past, and the film musical requires such an astounding degree of suspension of disbelief that audiences who seek special effects that blur distinctions between the fabricated and the real simply aren’t willing to engage it. But lo and behold, on December 25th, 2012 (always a day for big movies), a western (Django Unchained) and a musical (Les Miserables) will be launched into wide release on the heels of outstanding buzz (sure, Tarantino’s film is a revisionist western, but since revisionist westerns have been around for nearly fifty years, let’s just refer to them as the current standard western, shall we?). It’s difficult to say how this particular revival of these Hollywood genres has taken place. Of course, the unexpected success of previous films of these genres that took a risk with audiences (3:10 to Yuma and True Grit, Moulin Rouge and Chicago) certainly helps create the terrain for more such films, but this doesn’t necessarily explain why updated versions of classical Hollywood genres come back into style. Arguably, there are a multitude of genres we could use today, but unfortunately have no contemporary examples of. For instance, the ’30s and ’40s-style […]

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The Best Short Films

Why Watch? With the celebration of classic movies currently going down at the Oscars, it was the perfect year for The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore to share its love of silent films, Buster Keaton, The Wizard of Oz, and a familiar cartoon tune. No wonder it was nominated for Best Animated Short. What former Pixar employee William Joyce and co-director Brandon Oldenburg have done here is nothing short of amazing. They’ve used the newest technologies to create a wondrous, incredible, transportational fantasy story that reaches back to the roots of motion picture history. It’s a movie that’s imagination is only trumped by its beauty. What will it cost? Only 14 minutes. Skip Work. You’ve Got Time For More Short Films.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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