Every generation has their own classics—films that changed their way of watching movies, films that made history, films that knocked the box office’s socks off when premiere night came around.
Sometimes classics take money and time to make. Sometimes the most unexpected indie film turns out to be the next big thing—Napoleon Dynamite, for example. Films can change the way we view life. For years, directors and actors alike have wondered what exactly makes a classic. And the answer has never been discovered.
Classics from the 1970s to the 1990s:
-James Bond series (1962-2012)
-The Godfather (1972)
-Starwars (1977, the second highest-grossing movie of this period)
-E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
-The Terminator (1984)
-Back to the Future (1985)
Classics from the 1990s to 2005:
-Silence of the Lambs (1991)
-Jurassic Park (1993)
-Toy Story/PIXAR (1995)
-Fight Club (1999)
-The Matrix (1999)
-Harry Potter (2001-2011)
-The Lord of the Rings (2001-2003)
-Finding Nemo (2003)
-Kill Bill (2003)
-Pirates of the Caribbean (2003-2011. At World’s End: most expensive film of all time)
Classics from the year 2005 to present:
-40 Year Old Virgin (2005)
-Superbad (2007; Seth Rogan and Evan Goldberg wrote the script for this film when they were thirteen years old)
-The Dark Knight (2008)
-Terminator Salvation (2009)
-Avatar (2009, current highest-grossing film)
Throughout the generations, the idea of what makes a film great has changed drastically. Through the 1970s and ‘90s, the idea seemed to be movies with action, betrayal, friendship – strong emotions with close ties. From the ‘90s until the mid-2000s, computer-generated imagery (CGI) kicked in, allowing a wider range of plots to make their way to the big screen. Magic, science fiction, superheroes, and animation were suddenly possible, and these films changed the way movies were made.
And then we reach the present. Film looks real, CGI has become an art form we know exactly how to use, and crude humor and comedy has begun to move it’s way into the popular limelight.
Superbad, 40 Year Old Virgin – and the American ideal has never been stronger. With the ability to shoot for the stars because of CGI, plots are beginning to hold sideways perspectives, such as Inception – certain films are forcing their audiences to think, to feel inspired, and movies are evolving so fast, it’s become a challenge to keep up with them. All we can do is sit back and watch the show.
We all know how the ‘classics of old’ reformed our present – because movies do change the world. So how will these new classics shift our future?