Debate Magazine

Memorabilia and Nostalgia

Posted on the 01 October 2015 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth

From The Guardian
The final installment in blockbuster sci-fi saga The Hunger Games has moved ahead of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in the consciousness of cinemagoers, according to new research published by Variety.

US firm Piedmont Media Research found that The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2, which debuts in North America on 20 November, scored the highest level of anticipation ever recorded, a rating of 514 out of 1000. The Force Awakens, which is among the most-hyped films of all time, got 495 - though that figure is still the third-highest rating the company has ever recorded.
My first reaction to this was "really?". Star Wars is like this huge cultural thing, isn't it? A massive money-spinner, much loved by fans, while The Hunger Games is this smaller film thing, right?
But I'm starting to think that maybe George Lucas got the much better deal out selling Star Wars to Disney. I've come to terms with my love for Star Wars and how to a boy in 1977 it was a the dog's bollocks. I'd seen films before, but just nothing that was so visually amazing. That's not to say that they aren't good films. The reason they have lasted so long is that they aren't just special effects. There's good enough characters and story behind the effects to still make them watchable. But there's no denying the nostalgia. And the kids who saw films after it with much greater effects just aren't that bothered. My kids have a greater love for Pacific Rim than Star Wars (and Pacific Rim is a good fun action movie).
This also links into a story I heard on the radio about how Beatles memorabilia is falling in value, and what occurs to me is that well, Beatles fans, the people who will buy this stuff because of an emotional connection, are getting pretty old, into retirement, maybe running on pensions rather than good incomes, and being a bit more careful with money. That doesn't mean other people don't enjoy The Beatles, but that they don't have that depth of connection to them.
And The Hunger Games has been a great movie series so far. It hasn't disappointed audiences one bit. Mostly, by making faithful films that keep almost everything in, and not deviating to make it more palatable, more glamorous or whatever else. They even managed the thing of splitting the last book in 2 without cheating the audience with a duff first film to make more money (there is a tonal shift half way in the last book).

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