Tomorrow is Star Wars Day – May the Fourth be with you!
Dani has been watching the original Star Wars films – again. He now spends most of the day asking me questions about the plot, characters, who they are and where they came from; and who knows what… Some I know the answer to but others are so difficult, there is no answer. Like, “Dad. Who is Darth Vader’s dad?” Come on Dani give me a break…
1977 – The year movies changed forever
One thing I knew right away was this one: “Dad, what year was A New Hope made?”
That was the first ever Star Wars film. Also known as ‘Episode IV’. It was 1977 and I was 13 years old when I went to see it in the cinema. It thought is was the most incredible film ever made. It blew me away. It was easily the biggest film of that year.
Then he asked, “How many year ago was that dad?”
“Forty three years ago mate.” (Wow, 43 years ago…)
And that got to thinking… When I was his age what films would have been big in the cinema 43 years before? Come to think of it would they have been ‘talkies’ or silent movies? I worked out the dates and looked it up. It was quite an interesting year for the film making industry…
It turns out that the talkies began in 1927. The very first picture with sound was released in 1927. That film was ‘The Jazz Singer’ starring Al Jolson. As soon as I saw that I remembered it. A classic Trivial Pursuit question. Of course! It was also the highest grossing movie that year. A very famous film.
Another top movie in 1927 was also one I had heard of. But I have only seen small bits of it. – oddly enough, mainly from the video for Queen’s 1984 hit “Radio Gag-Ga”. The movie is called ‘Metropolis’ and features a C-3PO lookalike robot called Maria. I seem to recall seeing something about C-3PO being based the robot Maria in Metropolis, in one of those ‘how they made star wars’ programmes years ago.
There were three Hitchcock movies coming in at 13th, 14th and 15th a ‘most popular’ list. Two things surprised me about this. One was that I never realised Hitchcock was making films that far back. Secondly, I didn’t know he made silent movies. The film ranked 13th most popular was called ‘The Ring’ about two boxers fighting in love with the same woman.
Wow! I am not sure about this going back in time to compare my life with that of my son. It definitely makes me feel old. At least they were making ‘talkies’ back in 1927. But only just!