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The Golden Age of Science Fiction Cinema


Tim Goyette

Ok, I’m not an art historian but I remember science fiction movies of my youth seemed to be low budget. There were some outstanding ones but they tended to be the exception in a sea of junk. Does anyone remember “Green Slime?”

The creation of Science fiction films came shortly after the advent of the medium. Fritz Lang’s Metropolis shows an early version of the genre. They grew up together, although it seemed that science fiction was the neglected step child.

A great flurry of films came out in the 1950, many of which can be seen on reruns of Mystery Science Theatre 3000. MST3K made good use of some of the worst films of the past.

I would argue that we are now living in the Golden Age of Science Fiction Cinema. CGI techniques have been developed to an extent that the impossible is now, relatively, easily created and presented in film. Look back on the old aliens and monsters. They were men in suits and often it took a lot of work to suspend disbelief. Now, well, look at Avatar.

We just recently watched “How to Train Your Dragon” and before that “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.” Modern cartoons with an even more compelling presentation.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing earlier movies, I’m glorying in what we have today.

The other reason to believe that we are living in the Golden Age of Science Fiction Cinema is that the top grossing movies, year after year are Science Fiction and Fantasy.

I heard it claimed that it all started with “Star Wars.” It was the movie that proved to studios that they could make money, big money, off from big budget Science Fiction Movies. And that, as they say, was that.

Who's looking forward to Iron Man 2?

2010-05-20 20:59:35
The 1930's are called the "Golden Age of Aviation" because of gorgeous aircraft like the Stagger Wing Beech, a 200 mph bi-plane, and timeless airplanes like the DC-3, probably the first practical [could be operated at a profit] airliner. Some of the current Sci-Fi cinema is both gorgeous and timeless. It's nice to have that recognized so that we won't have to wait thirty years to appreciate the current classics for what they are. We knew we loved them. Now we know why. Thanks Tim.

2010-05-03 18:26:34
Right on the money!

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