I have to admit, I don't get to the movies that often. Three kids will do that. This year was not different. I saw a few movies aimed at the kids and a few movies with my wife. Three stand out. Creed, Jurassic World, and Star Wars. This movies found a formula to bring people back to theaters in a big way. That formula ... nostalgia.
Sure, you're probably thinking, nostalgia only goes so far. The movie still needs to be good. Look, I'm not arguing with you. Simply putting out a movie based on an established property is not enough. I'm looking at you Point Break. There is a certain code that needs to be cracked in order for these movies to resonate with their target audience. If you've seen these movies, you probably know where I'm headed.
Each one, in there own way, gave enough nods to the source material to make you take a trip back in time. When I saw Jurassic World I smiled the entire time. I literally looked at my wife and said, "I'm thirteen all over again." All I needed was a John Williams theme and a kid running to the window to look at an open park. I didn't need to see the dinosaurs. Then, I got a treat. They visited the remnants of the original park. All of a sudden you realize what they are doing. They're telling you this is the same universe. We aren't rebooting completely. Those nods became the key to the code cracking that needed to be done. Sure, Starlord helped too.
Creed was amazing. I couldn't help but notice how they took the best parts from the original four movies and incorporate them into this "reboot." That's right ... it's a reboot. But at the same time, it's not. The pieces we loved from the originals are all right there. The material is picked front he elements that worked, and what didn't, disappeared. That's right, they didn't seem to mention anything from Rocky five or six. That or those movies are just not memorable enough for me.
Star Wars might be the guiltiest nostalgia movie of the year. And it's setting records like crazy too. The biggest "internet" complaint is that simply retells the first movie with different characters. Isn't that what Star Wars has always done? In the end, does it really matter. All the elements you and I love were right there on the big screen. If I had to guess, I'd say you couldn't stop smiling. The nostalgia chords were strummed.
Nostalgia is a powerful drug making these old elements a key to success. I guess we will have to sit back and see what movie tries to use this same key to success. We know they're going to come out in droves for some time.