Top Gun: Maverick recently evoked the ’80s aesthetic of the first film in a nostalgic and compelling way, but didn’t hide the influence of the current era when discussing issues such as automation and technological parity. Some films aim to transport viewers back in time by presenting an old-fashioned narrative, whether through production design, cinematography, or editing.
In these cases, the films want to portray a very specific situation or time period that calls for an immersive experience. It’s not just about photographing in black and white, but rather manipulating old techniques or using creative choices to look deliberately outdated.
Last Night in Soho (2021)
The Wicked and the Energetic Last night in Soho is Edgar Wright’s homage to classic Giallo (Italian arthouse slashers), using vibrant red and blue lights to contrast present-day London with its mysterious past until it all collides. The film tells the story of an aspiring fashion designer who is mysteriously able to step into the 1960s through the eyes of a gorgeous aspiring singer. When the past unfolds as something less glamorous than she anticipated, the dreamlike fantasy turns into an absolute nightmare.
The first half of the film is all about aesthetics, but when Last night in Soho finally delves deep into the horror, the use of typical Giallo conventions blends beautifully with the mystery and gives the narrative a very compelling and old-fashioned tone, in a way even the moments set in the present feel like the London of the 60s.
The Golden Glove (2019)
One of the most disturbing films of recent years, The golden glove is a German film about Fritz Honka, a true serial killer who terrorized the streets of Hamburg in the 1970s. The film is an immersive experience, delving into Honka’s life as he brutally preys on poor and stores their bodies in the attic of his apartment.
The golden gloveThe production design is so careful that viewers can almost smell the putrid smell of Honka’s decaying apartment. Beyond that, it’s an accurate depiction of Hamburg in the 70s, as the tale traces the life and traditions of the lower classes back then, through the eyes of a self-destructive psychopath.
The Memory (2019)
Memory is Joanna Hogg’s semi-autobiographical masterpiece, so she wanted to make sure everything looked exactly like she remembered it. Through the lens of David Raedeker, 1980s London is presented in a dreamlike, old-fashioned way, as a shy film student struggles to balance her ambitious career with an emotionally charged relationship with a older man. elderly.
The film’s sets are fabulous and the culmination of the two parallel stories that take place in Memory : the frenetic relationship between the film student and her lover, and her hasty efforts to keep up with college. With hints of metalanguage, the film does an amazing job of making viewers feel like they’re witnessing those moments alongside the title character.
The Love Witch (2016)
The witch of love is the kind of film that fully engages: in an homage to 1960s horror films, it displays brilliant use of hard lighting to evoke 60s aesthetics. To further manipulate the image , the film was shot on 35mm film and the prints were struck directly onto the negative, giving the colors a perfect old-fashioned look.
The film tells the story of a contemporary witch who uses her spells to make men fall in love with her, with deadly consequences. Although the story is quite interesting, the visuals are what make The witch of love stand out in modern horror conventions, and the use of the color red is stunning.
Ti West’s latest film plays with typical slasher tropes and pays homage to low-budget horror classics such as Chainsaw Massacre and The hills Have Eyes. In the film, a group of young filmmakers set out to make an adult film in rural Texas, on a property owned by an elderly couple with dark desires.
Leading up to the typical slasher bloodshed, the film brings viewers closer to its ’70s feel with a great buildup. X also displays the shooting that takes place in the film in an antiquated way, with editing techniques reminiscent of aspects of low-budget home movies of the last century.
The Turin Horse (2011)
Béla Tarr is an acclaimed Bulgarian director known for his subversive films, including the 7:30 Satantangwhere. The Turin Horse delivers its groundbreaking marks once again, in a film that feels like it was stuck in time decades ago.
Set in the 19th century, The Turin Horse follows a poor farmer and his daughter as a powerful windstorm and an abused horse’s refusal to work mark the collapse of their melancholy routine. A philosophical study on the eternal return of existence, the black and white cinematography and the minimalist staging imprison the spectator in this hopeless lapse of time. It’s the kind of film that could easily have been released in the age of silence but would only work when accompanied by an orchestra playing the haunting soundtrack used by Tarr.
Everyone wants it!! (2016)
If there is a director who knows how to manage time, it is Richard Linklater, and Everyone wants it!! transports viewers to the scorching summer of 1980 Texas. In a plotless narrative, the film is a huge hangout with a group of freshmen and their baseball team veterans as they prepare for the start of a new college semester.
Unaffected by the present, the film doesn’t even follow the typical tropes of recent films set in the 80s. old and the set of past characters.
Licorice Pizza (2021)
One of the best films of 2021, this Oscar-nominated film from Paul Thomas Anderson is his take on the ’70s grace that was so impactful as a child. With clear references to George Lucas american graffiti, Licorice Pizza features characters growing up, falling in love, and (most importantly) running around California’s San Fernando Valley in the early ’70s.
The film’s chaotic yet laid-back events portray both fictional and real-life characters. Even one of the protagonists, Gary Valentine, is based on American film and television producer Gary Goetzman. Other popular 70s characters in the film include Jon Peters and Joel Wachs. Licorice Pizza also offers important historical contexts such as the gas crises that wreaked havoc in California at the time.
The Devil’s House (2009)
This lesser-known horror flick from Ti West brings back conventional ’80s conventions to set up a slow-burning narrative that pays off in the film’s hard-hitting final moments. Set in 1983, The Devil’s House follows a young college student who accepts a suspicious babysitting job on the night of a full lunar eclipse.
Slow-motion camera work adds to the film’s unsettling atmosphere and mysterious hints that something bad is about to happen. The film pays a lot of attention to its mood, as the protagonist begins to suspect that his customers are hiding something terrible from him. Most of the time, the character’s interaction with the environment and the objects around them is what pushes the narrative to its climax.
The Artist (2011)
This Best Picture Oscar winner is not subtle in his homage to classic cinema. With black-and-white and almost entirely silent cinematography, The artist tells the story of a silent film star who worries whether or not the arrival of talking pictures will rob him of his fame. In 1927 Hollywood, he strikes up a relationship with a young dancer ready to take a big break.
The heartwarming romance fits right in with the drama of notable stars giving space to a new era of cinema, in a way that the enchanting tale doesn’t just fall into nostalgic appeal. It evokes the majestic artistry of silent films while delivering a gripping story worth telling.
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