I’m pretty sure I grew up in the wrong era. In high school while the other kids were listening to Madonna and White Snake, my sister and I were listening to standards by Glenn Miller, Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. And smooth jazz. But that was my dad’s influence.
Because we lived out in the country we didn’t have cable and because it was in the olden days renting VHS movies was just becoming popular. So about 2-3 times a month we would stop by the only video store in our little town and rent 3 or 4 movies. What did we rent? Movies like:
No Time For Sergeants with Andy Griffith
Pillow Talk with Doris Day & Rock Hudson
Holiday Inn with Bing Crosby & Fred Astaire
We watched these and other classic films so many times we knew practically all the lines by heart. And we now speak to each other in movie quotes like,
“Papa, may I have a pony? No, Tony, you may not have a pony.” (No Time For Sergeants)
“I don’t wanna dance with him, I want you! This is New Year’s kid!” (Holiday Inn)
“Well of *course* we talk. Don’t everybody?” (Singin in the Rain)
Today’s movies have their place, but the oldies had so much more dialogue and therefore, to me, are more thought provoking. The writers didn’t need to resort to the basest bathroom humor to get a laugh. If you want to see true comedy, watch any movie with Bob Hope. Back then the ladies, like Lauren Bacall and Vivien Leigh, were the epitome of style. And the fellas, like Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart, were dashing and charming.
And thanks to Netflix online, I can pull up nearly any old-timey movie on any given day and watch to my hearts content. On a rainy day, I love to bundle up on the couch with a mug of hot chocolate and watch 3 or 4 classic movies right in a row.
They remind me of a simpler time, a time I wasn’t even alive for. But a time I can appreciate for it’s class, intelligence and true comedy.
If you are inexperienced in The Classics, let me give you a few to start with (don’t start with No Time For Sergeants, you’ll think I’m nuts):
White Christmas (Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney)
Gone With The Wind (Vivien Leigh, Clark Gable)
Rear Window (Jimmy Stewart)
Philadelphia Story (Jimmy Stewart, Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant)
The Quiet Man (Maureen O’Hara, John Wayne)