Classic films are forever an intriguing part of American life. What qualifies a movie to become a classic is varied as is opinions, but there are some general things that most will agree on. Filming techniques, directing ability and acting all come into play when considering a movie a classic. There is also the most important part of a movie, the audience. The ability of this movie to connect to you on a personal level, tugging at your emotions and touching your soul made it a classic. The ability of a movie to cross the lines of generations and gender also is important. When the movie comes together and you feel as though you are transported to the heart of it and only realize once again when the movie ends that you are in a theater and not the movie, it’s a classic.
An example of a movie that crossed the line into classic status is “The Jazz Singer” from 1927. This movie left a lasting impression on anyone who has ever viewed it. Produced by Warner Brothers and starring Al Jolson, who was a notable musician at the time, “The Jazz Singer” started the movies of Hollywood moving in another direction. Americans were introduced to musicals and talking which wasn’t common in the movie world. The drama of the movie could touch people’s hearts and souls so you left the theater moved for the first time.
Embracing antiwar and political statements, “All Quiet on the Western Front” was a classic film from 1930. With the book already in print the movie followed a German boy who had the displeasure of WWI personally. This movie brought to light the issues at hand of the violence of the war and with many soldiers returning from war crippled, or wounded if at all, it made an impact. Filmed in the back lots and country in California, this movie brought the pain and suffering felt by many American families in the open. The ability of the filmmakers to make a movie focusing on the harsh realities of the time made this movie an instant classic.
In 1937, Disney released the first full length cartoon and captured audiences like never before. “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” was a technological feat for the time period. People marveled at the fabulous new technology and families enjoyed the movie together. Including human characters and fantasy ones allowed joy to enter the hearts of all who watched. The story intrigued many as a fairytale that had no violence and ended happily ever after.
There have been many movies to enter the realm of classic status since 1930, allowing generation gaps to close and both males and females to be touched emotionally and spiritually. A classic film will never go out of style as people yearn to be moved on the movie screens even today.
Gregg Hall is an author living in Navarre Florida. Find more about this as well as movie downloads at