I have an idea. It may be a stupid idea but then again it may not be. I have thought about this a lot over the past few weeks and wonder how it could be set up. I think that most modern films are soulless pieces of crap that substitute style over substance, and use cgi and special effects to mask the fact that most modern films don’t have any heart. In reality most films today are ‘b’ movies with blockbuster budgets and will be forgotten about almost as soon as they finish playing at the local multiplex. However if you want to see good quality films there is nowhere to really go.
In Melbourne a lot of ‘art house’ cinemas have closed in the last decade. The Carlton Moviehouse is now an STA travel centre while the Lumiere cinema is now a campus of CQU. There is nowhere to really go to see old movies playing on the big screen either, ever since the Valhalla left the Westgarth cinema over a decade ago, while the only foreign cinema is the Chinatown twin cinema next door to the former Village Cinema Centre which is in the process of being demolished. The Capitol Cinema which was showing Asian films a decade ago is now a part of RMIT, whilst you’d think that with the recent large influx of Indian students into Melbourne that a Bollywood cinema would have sprung up to cater for their needs, since India is only the largest producers of film in the entire world. But alas, instead we have to put up with films based on toy lines or sequels to movies that were never any good to begin with. Worse still are all the remakes of classic films (and TV series) that Hollywood is inflicting onto us, as if they have run all out of ideas.
What I’d like to see is a revival cinema like the ones that they have all over America. It would be a place where you could see old films, much in the same spirit as the long departed but never forgotten Valhalla. I know that the Astor tries to half heartedly do a similar type of program to what the Valhalla did, but they do have lots of modern crap mixed in with the classics on their program. What I’d like to see is a place where one month they may have an Alfred Hitchcock Film Festival and in another month they will show a Walt Disney Film Festival. Another month they could celebrate great actors like Humphrey Bogart, Henry Fonda, James Stewart or James Cagney, or actresses such as Greta Garbo, Ingrid Bergman and Bette Davis. Wouldn’t it be great to see the Warner Bros. Gangster films or Universal Horror films on the big screen? You could even show classic comedy whether by the great silent clowns such as Keaton, Chaplin and Lloyd, to the early talky comedians like the Marx Bros, Laurel and Hardy, Abbott and Costello, Hope and Crosby, Martin and Lewis through to more modernish comedians like Woody Allen. It would be much better than having to sit through Bruno, The Love Guru or whatever piece of crap Adam Sandler had decided to sign up to.