Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby sir_schwick » Sat Oct 04, 2008 4:38 am UTC

Or something like Adaptation (or, heck, Austin Powers), where the same person plays more than one character simultaneously.


Peter Sellers was doing that in the early '60s and Gene Wilder followed him up a little bit later.

However if you showed them Blade they would be amazed that a negro would be cast as a superhero, so to say in the polite vernacular of the time.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby semicolon » Sat Oct 04, 2008 7:20 pm UTC

Anybody mention Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind yet? One of the best and most original uses of CG I've ever seen in a movie.
Also I know this is four pages late but:
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Whispering » Mon Oct 06, 2008 5:48 am UTC

The Matrix is a good one but why are we sticking to just American films? There are quite a lot of good films out there that aren't American how about the Drunken Master, Hard Boiled, or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon? (Showing my bias here.) And because they might of not seen it Metropolis the 1927 silent film.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby unquenchablefire » Thu Oct 16, 2008 11:35 pm UTC

I'm surprised that no one's mentioned A Scanner Darkly. The whole rotoscoping thing is hard to do even with modern tech. Plus, its really a trip to watch.

Also, I'd say Wanted, in the same vein as 300, how directors can have an enormous budget, crazy CGI, and then make a ton of money on a really bad film.

Also, I second the idea of El Mariachi, and would add Clerks, to show that now you don't have to have hardly any money to make an awesome movie.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Malice » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:02 am UTC

unquenchablefire wrote:Also, I second the idea of El Mariachi, and would add Clerks, to show that now you don't have to have hardly any money to make an awesome movie.


Both of those movies would probably have been possible in the 1950s, since both were shot on film, and simply saved money by eschewing crew, real actors, rules, planning, and aesthetics*. El Mariachi succeeds despite this because Robert Rodriguez is a genius with boundless physical and creative energy. Clerks succeeds despite this because cuss words are funny. (Er, I mean, Kevin Smith is an excellent writer.)

Both of those movies were before the actual digital revolution, which means it is now possible to produce a film for about 300 bucks (the price of a computer to edit on), which is the figure quoted for Tarnation. This figure does not include several hundred thousand dollars worth of prints, music rights, etc., and then I think there's advertising on top of that.

Another example is the 2006 film, "Aimee Semple McPherson" which apparently cost nothing more than the 300 dollar camcorder it was filmed with.

The basic point is that low-budget films have been possible for decades (Wikipedia cites Deep Throat, which was made for about 27,000), and were in fact the bread and butter of people like Roger Corman and American International Pictures. What we have today are essentially no-budget films, which is what would end up blowing said 50's directors' minds.

*And for El Mariachi, the costs of printing the film. Back in those days, a lot of independent filmmakers would go into massive amounts of debt in order to pay a lab to make them a print that they could then screen for studio execs and hopefully maybe possibly get their movie sold. Rodriguez's trick was to skip that step, show his movie to execs on a VHS tape, and hope that they liked the movie well enough to buy it based on that--and once they did, they'd pay for the print themselves, because for them it was essentially pocket change.
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Delass » Wed Oct 29, 2008 6:07 am UTC

Maybe something like superbad, because of all the censoring old movie makers had to deal with.

I would watch an enders game movie, and possibly see it in a theater. It might be epic, it might not be, but I doubt id wish for my 2 hours back.
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Re:

Postby drop » Sun Nov 09, 2008 5:53 am UTC

Actually most of the things I read here are quite sad.
What is interesting about the special effects? Show the special effects to the special effects guys, not the directors! Today's special effects will be probably bad in comparison to the ones in the next few years anyways. It's like saying that "better graphics = better computer game", which is simply not true. (compare Half-life (1) or Max Payne to some typical random FPS game with no plot at all (for example Quake IV!) - it's not the graphics that makes the game great!).

I would show them such movies that have "innovative" plot elements, or the whole way of showing the plot (Reservoir dogs, Snatch, Fight Club); the ways that films are cut nowadays (probably few random MTV clips would do, also some random "shooter" film); the innovations to narration (Usual suspects - I think the narrator is the black character). The old movies (apart from Hitchcock) were often completely straight forward, no twists, less character building (as someone said, one would rarely build few characters - give each a single story).

I would also show them the today's blockbastustes, which simply make me cry inside with their poor plots. These films arent even made for teens, 12 year old kids seem to be the target group... - the plot can be described in even less than 25 words: eurotrip, white chicks and the rest of this crap comes to a mind. Even Transformers was incredibly bad in terms of plot (such a huge hit, but so damn stupid).

The way plots are built and films are cut; or even how they behave have changed so much. I think a typical Meg Ryan film is much, much different from a typical comedy from the 50s or 60s (frankly speaking a lot of the old movies are as hard too watch as the new shitty movies, because they became simply obsolete with their "straightforward" plots; irritating cutting etc.).

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What makes you think 50s directors don't know how to make an epic? It's modern directors that suck at it. If it doesn't need an intermission, it's not an epic.


Epic films were fairly popular back then (all the movies about spartans/romans/egyptians etc.), but compare them to the "new movies" - it's a completely different way of telling the story and cutting! The FX are not that important! (quite sadly so many people at the XKCD board seem to think that "graphics" is the most important factor..).
I think Ben Hur was an epic movie; there was some movie with a chariot race etc.

In Poland they made few epic films during the 60s. Most of them sucked even back then, but they feel so weird when you watch them. Everything seems to be so "obsolete". (Btw. I recommend a movie called 'the Pharaoh', because it's one of the few old movies that are watchable when using the today's standards - dont expect epic battles, but rather quite nice plot http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pharaoh_(film) )

In addition, IMO the old horrors that werent so much based on the CGI were actually better! Carnival of souls comes to my mind. Alien (1) focused on the atmosphere before introducing the xenomorph - of course the puppet could probably not be made in the 50s, but still, something similar could be done. Actually the xenomorphs are designed much, much better than most monsters in the NEWER horrors. Do you remember any new movie, with a monster that would look scary? I dont. (there was this movie about people getting stuck in some sort of cave and I laughed when I saw the monsters for example). Actually, I dont remember any new horror being scary at all, in comparison to some old movies... (only ringu scared me a bit).

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Re: Re:

Postby Malice » Sun Nov 09, 2008 8:22 am UTC

drop wrote:Actually most of the things I read here are quite sad.
What is interesting about the special effects? Show the special effects to the special effects guys, not the directors! Today's special effects will be probably bad in comparison to the ones in the next few years anyways. It's like saying that "better graphics = better computer game", which is simply not true. (compare Half-life (1) or Max Payne to some typical random FPS game with no plot at all (for example Quake IV!) - it's not the graphics that makes the game great!).


It's not great movies that would surprise 50s directors. There are plenty of old great movies. But if you want to surprise somebody, show them something that in their time was entirely impossible. That means special effects.

I would show them such movies that have "innovative" plot elements, or the whole way of showing the plot (Reservoir dogs, Snatch, Fight Club)

None of these are particularly innovative. Citizen Kane used incredibly complex non-linear storytelling back in, what, 1941? And plenty of old films used in media res (Sunset Blvd, for example, or Double Indemnity).

the innovations to narration (Usual suspects - I think the narrator is the black character).


Actually, there is no narrator in the Usual Suspects. There's voice-over for much of the movie, spoken by Kevin Spacey. He's not black.

The old movies (apart from Hitchcock) were often completely straight forward, no twists, less character building (as someone said, one would rarely build few characters - give each a single story).


Things the movies would do rarely, but occasionally, would hardly blow anybody's mind. "What, that? Hitchcock did that. So?"
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Flying Betty » Mon Nov 10, 2008 11:43 pm UTC

I'd probably show them something from Pixar. 3D animation is pretty awesome to begin with, and it's come so far from the 2D frames drawn painstakingly by hand era that it probably would blow their minds.

And Ender's Game- god I hope not. It's a book about kids, and I don't think the marketing people are capable of seeing a movie about kids and not trying to make it childish and aiming it at the kid demographic. I'm afraid they'd ruin the story and try to make it cute and heartwarming.
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Isaac Hill » Tue Nov 11, 2008 12:30 am UTC

I'd show Buster Keaton the Matrix because I want to see that wall fall around him from the bullet-time POV.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby sir_schwick » Mon Dec 01, 2008 12:31 am UTC

I think 50s directors would be shocked by the fact that animation can be used as a medium for serious movies. Akira, A Scanner Darkly, or any of the other many serious anime movies would surprised them with their success. Although I wonder, did anyone back then try a serious film in an animated(partial or complete) format?

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby bigglesworth » Mon Dec 01, 2008 12:55 am UTC

This might qualify: Victory Through Air Power
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Malice » Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:42 am UTC

sir_schwick wrote:I think 50s directors would be shocked by the fact that animation can be used as a medium for serious movies. Akira, A Scanner Darkly, or any of the other many serious anime movies would surprised them with their success. Although I wonder, did anyone back then try a serious film in an animated(partial or complete) format?


Early Walt Disney movies weren't the kiddie crap-fest today's are. Fantasia, for instance, as a work of art goes far beyond most modern animation.
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby sir_schwick » Mon Dec 01, 2008 5:14 am UTC

Early Walt Disney movies weren't the kiddie crap-fest today's are. Fantasia, for instance, as a work of art goes far beyond most modern animation.


I would agree and feel shamed that I forgot about early Disney animation. One of my favorite movies is Alice in Wonderland. Also was I a fan of Gumby, although that was never a movie if I remember correctly.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Freddino18 » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:23 pm UTC

xkcd wrote:1. Are they ever gonna get around to that Ender's Game movie they keep teasing us with? If so, is there a chance they're not going to completely fuck it up?

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:46 am UTC

For a serious resurrection of this old thread, how about showing The Artist to people from either side of the introduction of Talkies... (Yes, I know that was well before the '50s, but this is by way of taking liberties with the question, to break the ice.)

To the ones who are unsure about prerecorded sound, the "sounds" segment might be interesting, to those who are progressive, show that a good story can still be shown (mostly) without the new-fangled developments. (Also show them Silent Movie and/or The Plank... Because, why not?)


For SF showcasing, even to the '50s directors, I already had in mind "Silent Running" (as a picture in my head, with honestly no realisation that when I remembered the title it would be so linked!), with half a mind to kick-starting the environmental/scientific aspects. Blade Runner, also (yeah, another reason why, with the recall of "Running", my head asplode!) for its messages, but the effects stand up well, even to us...


For fun, I think I'd like to get The Italian Job ('69 original, naturally!) into this game, too. Cinematically, long-shots, in-car shots, following/leading viewpoints, panning galore and the tense bit leading up to the "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" quote have got to be educational and informative in the development of the art of shot composition. You could use The French Connection and/or Bullit for some of these things, if you wish (and the split-frame effects are a bonus), but I'd rather you just take time to show them all, to any appreciative audience.


As a bad example of camera-shottery, any (Bay era) Transformers movie. Effects would stun them, probably, but the camera movement around the scene would demonstrate the extreme over-use of (real or virtual) panning/tracking/rotating shots... Not unique to the modern era, but an easy target.

(Amazingly, this last suggestion and my first are the only examples that have popped up in the last decade, so unknown to the original threadsters...)


And, to stretch a point further, I'd go back to Shakespeare's times and show Shakespeare (and/or Bacon and the rest) various adaptations of his plays, especially including Olivier's, McKellan's and DiCaprio's.

Forbidden Planet has already been mentioned, but it would be interesting to see if it was recognised (or, if I get the timing wrong, plagiarised!) by Will, or whoever...


Extra Credit having doubtless expired, or at least the incentive for it, I shall merely present the same current fact as Freddy aludes to, by his image, upon the first of the credit-points (with the personal opinion that it wasn't terrible, but that's not to say it wasn't roundly revised in the conversion process).

For the second, it's an initialism. "Broken Out Of Time, It's Lovely If That's You". The feeling in your gut that you get when, after returning from the past (having interfered by showing people things that hadn't happened for decades, if mot centuries, in their original futures), you think you're about to meet someone you knew well, before your trip back in time, but you're unsure if they're still the same person. Or, if they appear to be, you are the same person to them as you think you ought to be.

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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby mosc » Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:05 pm UTC

Oh man, let it die. I feel so old now!
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby eSOANEM » Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:27 pm UTC

I'm not going to let it die just yet because, even though I've not actually seen it and, whilst it might be mindblowing in a somewhat different way, Moonlight (with the introduction that it won 3 oscars including best picture and was nominated for another 5) would blow some minds.
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Liri » Sat Apr 08, 2017 2:54 am UTC

Boyhood, Children of Men, and Birdman would all be pretty darn good.
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Re: Modern movies to blow 50's directors' minds

Postby Weeks » Fri Apr 14, 2017 6:34 pm UTC

Liri wrote:Children of Men
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