This past weekend I watched Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.Â Released in 1939, this movie is a classic in its own right, having won an Academy Award for Best Writing, Original Story.Â It also has been named to top 100 movies lists numerous times by the American Film Institute.
Besides the fact that this movie is over seventy years old and has won many awards, what makes it a classic?Â For me, it is a storyline that still rings true, even seven decades later.Â In fact, I’m certain if I could encourage a handful of teenagers to put down their tech devices and ignore the fact that it’s a black and white film, they would appreciate the themes of corporate greed and political corruption.
Of course, not all classics are from the early half of the 1900s.Â Quite frequently one can see newer works of art, literature, music, and film that are labeled as modern classics.Â While it is tempting to discount such terminology, there may be value to it.Â In a society where innovation happens constantly, it seems that a book that holds favor or a band that still produces popular music after twenty years may be worthy of the title of modern classic.
This week our writers have brought some modern classics to light.Â In the field of music, we have R.E.M., a band that has been around since 1980. Just last week they released their fifteenth album, which has received positive reviews.Â From the land of gaming comes Civilization V.Â Existing in a field where new games are released daily, making it to your fifth version in twenty years is quite an accomplishment.
Of course, there are plenty of classics available for our enjoyment, such as Frank Sinatra’s music.Â However, don’t let a few less years discourage you from checking out some of the newly minted classics.