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» Mediocrity or masterpiece?

by Cece Farley, published on Thursday, March 18, 2010

There have been occasions in Hollywood film history that are utterly unforgettable, classic movie moments that have made lasting impressions on a variety of audiences. Whether it be the timeless kiss in the rain between Holly Golightly and Paul Varjak at the end of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, the chilling shower scene in Psycho, or the heart-wrenching confessions revealed in The Breakfast Club, any viewer is sure to identify with a similar scene. However, when comparing present-day films to such classic masterpieces, the question arises over whether modern movies will be so cherished in the future.

It appears that current film directors have sacrificed their passion for their art. Rather, they have settled for generic mediocrity in the field, choosing to direct films that will provide a few cheap and forgettable laughs. After a successful box office movie such as the 2004 hit Mean Girls, you can expect to find dozens of similar movies cranked out one after one, all with fairly mainstream plotlines, themes, and characters. Subsequent to watching the Final Destination or Bring It On series, it is questionable whether the same movie was watched four times over. And let’s not forget the hackneyed and irritatingly sugarcoated endings of the Disney Channel Original Movies.

When evaluated with their classic counterparts, what modern movies lack is originality and a good message. Instead, directors haven chosen to substitute these traits with trendy and eye-catching special effects. Although this believability factor has proven to be quite impressive in some films such as the new Star Wars Episodes versus the series’ original trilogy, in the end, there is no argument that the underlying message and storyline are essential.

There is also the celebrity aspect. With the exception of a few indie films such as Juno, which skyrocketed Ellen Page to nearly instantaneous fame, it seems that almost all high-budget films use the same Hollywood icons in order to gain popularity. A recent instance is the upcoming “star-studded” film Valentine’s Day, casting many newer faces such as Taylor Swift, Taylor Lautner, and Emma Roberts and other more reputable actors such as Julia Roberts and Shirley MacLaine. Although advertisements have boasted about the film’s “all-star ensemble,” it is dubious whether or not this ubiquity of well-known faces was used in order to mask the film’s lack of actual substance.

It is about time for an instantly classic movie to come out in theaters, the kind of movie that will be showed for generations to come. Such a concept is not incomprehensible. By combining the incredible and ever-progressing technology of today with the timeless charm and style of yesteryear, any 21st century director is bound to get it right.

Source: my.hsj.org

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