When I told a few of my friends that I was going to watch North by Northwest, I received quizzical looks from all. The first question I was asked was “Is it for class?” as if to say that there was no other logical explanation for me to be watching a movie that old. Have we as a generation labeled anything old as bad?
After watching North by Northwest and enjoying it, I began to wonder why the younger generations (including myself) tend to assume that anything new must be better than anything old. We seem to always be thinking about the next new innovation or hot new gadget but we never seem to stop and appreciate what we already have. This isn’t to say that the new technology and inventions that come out are not good for society or us as individuals, but we seem to be very focused on the next new thing.
In my marketing class, we talked about how consumers seem to be drawn by the newest fads and gadgets. Even at lunch today two of my friends were showing off their new Apple iphone 4S…both had owned the iphone 4. We see this sense of not being attached in business too. Nowadays, it seems to be easier and cheaper to buy a whole new product than to have the broken one fixed. We seem to have lost connections with the old.
In the case of movies and our culture, we seem to look for what wows us or what movie has the best special effects. Lots of action and great special effects seems to be a recipe for blockbuster hits and millions of dollars. Yes, we still have movies with good acting but that doesn’t seem to be needed for a hit movie. North by Northwest had a great cast and didn’t need to rely on special effects to entertain its audience. Perhaps we could learn something from the past after all.