Ranch Reflections are articles written by students who want to share their experiences, thoughts, and concerns. This is a great opportunity for students to branch out beyond traditional news stories.

Jonathan Barker – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – For a majority of modern audiences, the black and white film is a foreign concept, a format of yesteryear bettered by the craft and technology of the modern movie.

However, the importance of the archaic medium should not be mistaken. In these colorless images audiences often see a more genuine picture that tells more and shows less, often influencing the medium to push further.

Movies of the past were also a reflection of the cultural standards of the time. Nudity, profanity or any obscene or grotesque manners were non-existent. 1960’s ‘Psycho’ is credited to have the first on screen death sequence. The infamous stabbing scene in the shower never actually shows the stabbing motion, reflecting the censoring of that time.

Black and white film was of a time and a place of very little technological advancement in special effects; computer animation was yet to be created. Instead, the filmmakers relied on practical effects and careful camera work to show

Gojira” (1954), popularly translated into “Godzilla,” is a testament to the practical effects of the time. The Japanese allegory is not as much about the beast itself in this original installment, but a warning of the consequences of nuclear power.

With that being said the monster still creates havoc and destroys cities in its path, like any 164-foot reptillian beast should.

The actual beast was not 164 feet, or even a reptile, instead it was Japanese actor Haruo Nakajima in a costume stomping on miniature cities made of cardboard. Through cinematic perspective, it appears as if the man was more beast and the cardboard destruction was the true carnage of Japanese streets.

The 2014 American reboot ‘Godzilla,’ in the parlance of our time, used computer animation to display the destruction of the massive battles of the behemoths. In all these visual escapades, the warnings about nuclear warfare were missing and the producers made just a monster movie.

Do not confuse this fondness for old films with a criticism for new movies. The possibilities that computer animation and effects can yield in the modern day are endless and fascinating. Moviemakers can create whatever they so desire, something much more difficult to do in yesteryear. Boundaries can be pushed, reality can be twisted and anything can come to life in such a pristine and vivid way.

In 2010’s ‘Inception,’ Christopher Nolan’s thought provoking blockbuster about twisting boundaries of dream and reality, would have been an impossible concept for any auteur to conceive in any time but now. This true blend of art and blockbuster can be credited to the mind of the creator as well technology that realized the vision.

Yet, movies like ‘Citizen Kane‘ and ‘The Grapes of Wrath‘ still maintain excellence and continue to entertain upon endless reviewing, age is but a number to truly great art.

One day you will might find yourself watching and actually enjoying these old