I thoroughly enjoyed The Dark Knight Rises. I thoroughly enjoy most of Christopher Nolan’s movies (I have yet to see Following or Doodlebug). Christopher Nolan, for me, falls into the fourth great generation of film makers.
The first generation is easy to identify –characterized by their extreme creativity, experimentation, and lack of attention to the visual cues which define our perception of reality. The business of movies was the business of dreams. For a great description - go watch Hugo. That was Scorsese’s nod his forbearers.
You see every time a new art form is born, the kids are the first to really appreciate its merits. Adults at the time – they scoff and say: “Ha! Movies, they are nothing but a kid’s toy!”. And to be true, movies did start as kid’s toys. Nickelodeon machines at carnivals which cost a nickel to see a stick figure bounce a ball. That first generation of directors? They were the few adults who saw the brilliance in the new art form and decided to run with it. They had lessons to learn, and mistakes to make – and they were limited by the technology available at the time.
Enter the Second great generation of movie makers. These guys (and gals) were children when the first generation were making dreamscapes for the masses. These kids grew up knowing that the potential was still vastly untapped. They had ideas wholly unknown to the first generation. Enter Alfred Hitchcock, a guy who really pushed the boundaries of emotion evocable by motion picture.
The second generation realized that movies could be more than kid's toys. They, unlike their predacesors, decided to take movies to dark places - sad places - romantic places even. And they were rewarded handsomely for it. Visionaries from this time are today thought of as the fathers of legitimate film. And the popularity of movies sky rocketed across all age groups.
But now the stage was set for something special. By this point, the business of making movies had ballooned into a multibillion dollar industry, and with the increased revenues came increased budgets. Suddenly, the third generation of Directors were able to see their wildest imaginations realized on the big screen…
Directors like Spielberg and George Lucas brought us back to the dream land we imagined at movie’s infancy. Far exceeding the capability of the earliest dream makers to bring to life magical and fantastic worlds. But that brings us back to the beginning. The kids who grew up watching Star Wars and Jurassic Park? They are making movies themselves now. Christopher Nolan was born in 1970. He was dreaming of new tricks when he was watching Han Solo escape the asteroid worm in the Millennium Falcon. He was dreaming up new plot devices when the terminator was dealing with time travel. He’s showing us all how cool the fourth generation of movies can be. Now go see The Dark Night Rises so that I don’t feel bad talking about it in a few weeks…
Now the preceptive reader will notice that there are some parallels between the early movie industry and the current video game industry. I'll leave it to you to guess where I think the games industry is heading...
PS: Alot of my friends put up their artwork so I'm going to jump on that bandwagon. This is my latest piece inspired by my fiance Courteney watching the season finale of the bachelorette.
Tell me what you think!