March 27, 2017 - Robert John HadfieldLego Batman Movie - Combining the Old and the New
Nostalgia sells - but only so far.
On Saturday I was looking for something to do with my son. He is a big fan of video games, comics, superheros, Star Wars and almost anything in that "Comicon" type of world. Admittedly, I generally enjoy many of the same things. But for me it is mostly based on nostalgia. Superheros are part of the dreams and fantasies of many young boys, and I was no different. So watching my son enjoy those things brings back memories.
So on Saturday afternoon I remembered that there was a new Lego Batman movie. I read a couple of reviews and people seemed to love it. So we hopped in the car and headed to the theater.
I have to admit, it was a super-fun movie. It was over-the-top fun and silliness. Yes it was Batman, and he was a superhero, but it didn't take itself too seriously. The story and the presentation were fantastic. The writing was good, the voices were good, the visuals were good and my son and I had a great time.
It also interested me because it was a total blend of the old and the new. Legos, one of the oldest toy franchises in the world, presented in modern 3D animation cinematic form. And beyond that, they made numerous references to other Batman stories, including the 60s Adam West Batman that made a brief appearance on screen.
And isn't that the trend today? think about all the movie remakes we have seen, the resurrection of characters and stories from a bygone era brought into the new age. Even Star Wars carries such nostalgic value that several average movies still haven't hurt the franchise.
And the nostalgia alone is enough to sell tickets. We like to remember, we enjoy the comfort of the past, our history is a comfort zone. The truth is, millions of people will spend money on a ticket to a Batman movie no matter what. And studios know it! But something is often lost in the process.
Many movies today get so caught up in the modern tools that they forget the past. Yes we all love special effects, great sound, great animation, etc. But if the story is missing, the movie will ultimately disappoint us. For example, George Lucas was so focused on the special effects in the Star Wars franchise in the 70s and 80s, he missed the fact that it was the STORY that sold tickets - not the special effects. So when he released the prequel in the 90s, he was so focused on the effects, the story suffered. And Star Wars fans reluctantly watched.
The beauty of the past is the importance of the STORY. In previous generations of entertainment, people didn't have so many crutches to lean on. If the story wasn't there, people weren't entertained. And the truth is, it's still the same. No matter how incredible the effects were, without the fun characters and a good story, things like the Batman Lego Movie will always suffer.
Some of our success at Audiomover depends on the nostalgia of our customers. People have a past that needs to be preserved. They have a story that means EVERYTHING to them. They have recordings of school plays, interviews with Grandparents, recordings playing with the kids, etc. And it's the stories that truly tie the generations together. And in our little part of the world, it is fun to be a part of that. Taking a cassette and putting it on a CD, capturing the data from a DAT and creating an MP3, recording a VHS and putting it on a Pad or digital device. Taking the old and bringing it into the new. It is a blessing to have a business where we are part bringing the past and the future together.