Disposable Media

This may be a confession too far, but I still listen to rock music from my tennage years and this rainy Sunday afternoon had a yearning to watch Saturday Night Fever again.

The reformation of ninties bands such as Take That and the Spice Girls show that music remains a key definer of zeitgeist, but it made me wonder if, in these days of disposable media, movies will have the same impact on today's generation Z.

Indeed, all video media these days seems to be of limited duration - a YouTube clip is rarely funnier or more insightful the second time around and it's only as a collective that UGC defines a generation, unlike seminal movies of the past. Perhaps McLuhan was right, the medium is the message.

It's difficult to think of recent English language movies that might become classics - when I was studying film it was even then clear, a couple of years after its release that Apocolypse Now was set to become a film that would be watched and remembered.

Watching movies on a screen at home, or watching content at home is itself a different experience to collectively watching content. Will this change the way content is produced ? There certainly seems to be a move towards special effects over pure drama and, as the values of TV shows such as CSI and NCIS dominate, cinematic thrillers have become rarer and rarer.

From the rise of the one minute of fame video to the dominance of computer generated characters, there's little doubt that the rise of internet TV has, and will continue to, change the content itself.

But, there's no Saturday Night Fever on my cable service, I refuse to illegally download, so I guess it's time to slot Grease into the DVD again....