Old movies are better. I’m not sure why. They usually are in black and white. The actors tend to be over dramatic. The special effects are not up to current “snuff.” But still, old movies are best. Well, not all old movies. Some are junk.
Woody Allan, June Allison, Fred Astaire, Lauren Bacall, Humphrey Bogart, Wallace Barry, Humphrey Bogart, Charles Boyer, James Cagney, Charlie Chaplin, Gary Cooper, Montgomery Cliff, Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Marlene Dietrich, Henry Fonda, Glen Ford, Clark Gable, Greta Garbo, Judy Garland, Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn, Charles Laughton, Katharine Hepburn, Buster Keaton, Ray Malland, Fredrick March, Shirley McClain, Marilyn Monroe, Merle Oberon, Martha Ray, Red Skelton, Barbara Stanwyck, Jimmy Stewart, Elizabeth Taylor, Shirley Temple, Rudolph Valentino, Robert Wagner, John Wayne, Jane Wyman, . Some of these are still amongst the living.
One nice thing is that Ted Turner preserved many old movies and we can watch these actors uninterrupted by commercials on television.
Thank you, Ted!
What a great contribution to the people of the world that like old movies. Instead of rotting away in cans in some warehouse, they are preserved for generations to enjoy. I could just hug Ted Turner and all those who have preserved our movie heritage.
Sadly, some films are lost forever.
I know that you can add lots of names to the above list. Who are your favorite actors of the past?
To tell you the truth, I don’t pay much attention to the directors except for Alfred Hitchcock whose name alone will drag me to his movies. Some well-known directors are Woody Allan, Frank Capra, Charlie Chaplin, George Cukor, Victor Fleming, John Ford, Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, John Ford, Michael Powell, Nicholas Ray, Preston Sturges, and Billy Wilder.
Some of these are still at it.
Many actors are also directors. Many actors and directors are also writers. Billy Wilder is a famous writer. I think he directed the very funny Some Like it Hot.
That is about all I know about the writers except they were targeted as “communist” by a dangerous United States Senator who destroyed many careers by “black listing.” I won’t give him the honor of mentioning his name.
The Dialog :
The writers are key to a good movie and although I have mostly ignored them so far, here is some of their dialog courtesy of [http://famous-movie-quotes.org:]
Casa Blanca : (1942)
Renault: What in heaven’s name brought you to Casablanca?
Rick: My health. I came to Casablanca for the waters.
Renault: The waters? What waters? We’re in the desert.
Rick: I was misinformed.
Ferrari: We might as well be frank, monsieur. It would take a miracle to get you out of Casablanca, and the Germans have outlawed miracles.
Ilsa: Play it (again), Sam. Play “As Time Goes By.”
Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
Montag: Well, it’s a job like any other. Good work with lots of variety. Monday, we burn Miller. Tuesday, Tolstoy. Wednesday, Walt Whitman. Friday, Faulkner. And Saturday and Sunday, Schopenhauer and Sartre.
No Country for Old Men (1007):
Moss: If I don’t come back, tell mother I love her.
Carla Jean: Your mother’s dead, Llewelyn.
Moss: Well, then I’ll tell her myself.
Good dialog is still around but you might find it sparse in this day and age. The writers create good dialog but destroy it with filthy words. We all know that some people have foul mouths but we don’t need to hear it and neither do our kids. The movies makers want to make things as realistic as possible. I say, make it unrealistic but still enjoyable.
Is it true the old movies are better?
I don’t think so. Private Ryan is a fairly new movie but from my point of view as a former combat infantryman, it will become a classic just as did All Quiet on the Western Front. Great acting by Tom Hanks and great directing by Steven Spielberg made it so.
There are many old movies that have been remade such as Mutiny on the Bounty and Titanic. I like the remakes of the first but not so much, the second. The special effects in the latest version of Titanic was what it was all about, but I like the more convincing earlier versions. (Yes, I like the last version too.)
So, what do you think? Do you think that old movies are better?
by John T Jones, Ph.D.