Enrique Bonilla Morales
I think young people, mostly, reject old movies before they even watch them. They believe those films are boring and have nothing “new” or different to offer compared to modern movies. I strongly disagree with this statement. I consider that many movies from the 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, and so on, have a unique cinematography, storytelling, and music which makes them beautiful: it’s like reading something from Shakespeare or going to a museum to see a painting from Van Gogh. They are artists and pieces of art that transcend the test of time, and that will be memorable for years to come, even if they are the product of a time that is no longer with us.
I decided to write a series of articles where I will talk about some of my favorite Horror, Fantasy, and Science Fiction films from different decades. I’ll start with Fantasy movies from 1930 to 1950. I could include many movies, but my regular job and Baking Trance restrict my time only to be able to talk about two of them. Hopefully, you will have something nice to watch for the evening after reading this.
A Matter of Life and Death (1946)
I watched this movie with a friend and my wife last year. Before watching it, I had never seen a movie that perfectly described the tiny boundary that splits reality from imagination, madness from sanity. It tells a story about Peter Carter, an English pilot who supposedly crashed in his airplane, and (I’ll say) an angel was sent to take him to Heaven, but he lost Peter in the fog. Because of that, there is a discussion between Heaven and Peter about if he should go to Heaven or stay on Earth.
What I love the most is how every fantastic element that happens is difficult to classify as real or as a product of imagination. As a viewer, you can’t conclude if the pilot was actually having hallucinations or not, you could remove all fantasy from the film, and you will have the same outcome: the fact that fantasy exists does not modify reality. This movie shows how our perception of reality is relative and limited; we will never see the world as it actually is, and everyone could perceive something different and still build a world that makes sense.
The Thief of Bagdad (1940)
My mom recommended me this movie for a long time, and I became part of what I am currently criticizing: I ignored her because the movie was old. But after watching it, I became a fan of old movies: now I comprehended how old films help us understand modern cinema, and above all, I realized why they are an enjoyable experience by themselves. The movie narrates the adventures of Ahmad (a tricked and imprisoned Sultan from Bagdad) and Abu (a thief). They try to defeat the evil plans of the Grand Vizier, Jaffar who wants to keep the Princess from Basra against her will and become the Sultan of Bagdad.
Although predictable for today standards, and with the potential to be judged for it’s whitewashing (even if I feel this judgment to be unfair for that time), it has beautiful sets, impressive and innovating special effects (for the time), terrific acting, and an incredible script inspired by The Arabian Nights, which makes this movie a unique experience. Thanks to it, we have fantasy films formulated as we do today. Movies like Life of Pi or Aladdin would not exist without this historical precedent.
Editor’s note AI-I: I do not know about you guys, but now I really want to watch those movies! Enrique has convinced me before of watching all kinds of films, and he has an amazing taste! He married our baker Adjani after all! ❤ So, my advice is that you take his advice and watch these motion pictures!
Have you watched these movies? What do you think about old films? Did you like this cake? Please share a slice of your opinion in the Comment Section below! The Bakers are always happy to read about your thoughts!
If you liked this cake, share a slice with your friends!
Featured image taken from flickr.
“A Matter of Life and Death” image taken from el gabinete del doctor mabuse.
“The Thief of Bagdad” image taken from doblaje.fandom.com.