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Many say that creativity is in decline and that movies, music, books and other arts / entertainment were better in the past.

You agree or it's just nostalgia.

by Anonymousreply 7211/21/2020

I agree.

by Anonymousreply 111/20/2020

I agree. Even science proves it. An older study, but still.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 211/20/2020

WAP surely could not have been made in the 1950s.

CLEARLY, it's better now.

by Anonymousreply 311/20/2020

Movies and books are getting better because of the wide array of voices and histories of the people creating it. Music, in general, is always in flux and there is amazing stuff released today. The problem is pop music is sooo cookie cutter and faceless. The "artist" behind a pop or hip-hop or pop-country song does not matter one bit. It's all about formulas. It's taken the soul out of popular music. We've always had crappy manufactured pop acts, but at least in the past they used to be played along with legit artists.

by Anonymousreply 411/20/2020

"We've always had crappy manufactured pop acts..."

Fuck off, bitch!!!!!

by Anonymousreply 511/20/2020

Music was definitely better in the past, films too. Books and TV are better today. Contemporary art is shit.

by Anonymousreply 611/20/2020

Agree with R4.

by Anonymousreply 711/20/2020

Depends where you look. Many seem to say this yet not take the time to dive deeper. Searching 'FKA twigs' isn't that hard, for instance.

by Anonymousreply 811/20/2020

I do agree, yes. As an example, the short fiction in the New Yorker is nowhere near as good as it used to be 20 years ago.

by Anonymousreply 911/20/2020

I’d take “976-Evil” over “Get Out” any day of the week.

by Anonymousreply 1011/20/2020

Agree with r4. Books and tv are better, movies are somewhat worse (Disney taking over everything under the sun), and music is much much worse. Even if there is great music out there, the artists don’t make much money anymore (Spotify), and it doesn’t reach a big audience anymore (also Spotify). Music has been gutted.

by Anonymousreply 1111/20/2020

R8, FKA twigs is boring and repetitive. Twenty-thirty years ago there were mainstream quality female - and male - music artists producing stuff that would be widely played. Yes, there is some good music being produced but it's increasingly not in the pop/contemporary music genres.

I do think a problem with a lot of contemporary pop is the digitisation of sound and the fact that music is basically programmed, not performed, but that's another issue.

by Anonymousreply 1211/20/2020

I promise I'm not Janbot, but listen to how something like "When I Think About You" was so beautifully composed and lush. You hear a clear definition between instruments and soundscapes. That is something largely missing from most current pop music, which sounds claustrophobic and dense.

by Anonymousreply 1311/20/2020

I don't think creativity is in decline - why would it be?

The problem is that the arts (movies and music in particular) have now been thoroughly taken over by the businessmen and the industry. Businessmen are very conservative, they'll only support what they're confident will sell, and they shy away from anything that's different or that challenges a formula. As a result, pop music, mass-market films, etc., have been dumbed down and made bland, to appeal to the widest possible audience. And there's very little (not enough) pushback from the performers/artists themselves, who these days will often do whatever it takes to be famous or successful.

This is even true in the book industry - so many fiction writers these days sound alike because they're all following a formula the industry likes (like for example all the people who try to write like David Foster Wallace because his books sold very well and the industry liked him).

by Anonymousreply 1411/20/2020

"Everything was better 50 years ago."

by Anonymousreply 1511/20/2020

Is it me or did more pop stars play instruments?

by Anonymousreply 1611/20/2020

They also wrote songs.

by Anonymousreply 1711/20/2020

On TV most of the reboots have been awful.

More channels so more chances for better TV, but the rest isn't is nearly as good.

by Anonymousreply 1811/20/2020

Naw, people who say that are just out of it. I thought the creative energy of the east Village had died but yup it's out there in Brooklyn I was stunned and pleased to discover. Didn't hang any more. Too young a crowd for me and I have other things to do. But they're still there having fun like we once did. I've just moved on.

by Anonymousreply 1911/20/2020

Totally agree.

ESPECIALLY pop music, which is just a hundred Drake copycats.

ZZZZZZzzzzzzz .....

by Anonymousreply 2011/20/2020

Who can afford to live in the East Village anymore, r19?

Who in Manhattan, at studios, networks or music labels, will green-light original voices or everyday people — if they don't do exactly what the last-selling voices were doing?

NYC used to be a Mecca for artists from anywhere and the studios, networks and labels were upstarts, peers from the middle class sometimes and part of a counter-cultural movement.

Who can afford to move to NYC now? Who in NYC is interested in anything besides Ivory Towers and status?

Taylor Swift is big because her daddy was a powerful Manhattan banker who bought her a platform and writers. That's 2020 NYC and I can't relate.

by Anonymousreply 2111/20/2020

I agree totally that creativity is in decline...

by Anonymousreply 2211/20/2020

My hypothesis is that we judge the past creativity on the pieces that have passed the "time test" and thus are probably the best out of the slew of good, mediocre and lousy pieces created. In other words, classic rock stations play the best of rock, not every rock song that came and blessedly went. On the other hand, with contemporary pieces, we don't know what will last and so are bombarded with the whole output of now, thus feeling like most of it is crap. There are always great works being composed, written, sung, danced, painted, etc. But in the rush of cultural motion, we may not pick them out. The future will judge what is great.

Every generation has genius.

by Anonymousreply 2311/20/2020

[quote]I don't think creativity is in decline - why would it be?

Because the middle class is in decline. The voices are fewer, less diverse and coming from rich people or their trust fund kids.

Artistic excellence has always depended on leisure time and expendable income — something maybe 10 percent of people have anymore.

The 1 percent has just drained the life — and real estate — right out of the middle and working classes to be able to afford time to create new things or to move to NYC or LA, not to mention buy artwork.

So we get corporate, shopping mall product in music, Disney movies, etc.

I do agree that internet tech has enabled TV to get better; more cinematic. There is a higher number of quality shows. But they're repeating the same things and subjects that only appeal to a niche market of art viewers, anyway. Most of TV is just run-of-the-mill super hero shit on repeat.

Just like the movies. Studios won't green-light a wide release movie for anything that isn't part of a pre-existing franchise we've seen done better before. I thought Marvel/AVENGERS perfected the comic book movie, but that's played out now and oppressively everywhere.

Christopher Nolan is an exception, but his latest was pretty uninspiring.

So who cares? Now with the pandemic, it's just getting worse. Everybody has more difficulty and expense trying to make anything and it endangers their health.

by Anonymousreply 2411/20/2020

I'm not sure. I've seen some great stuff in the past 20 years, but as a whole, I do think the film world certainly takes far less risks and is worse off for it. You have some studios like A24 who constantly take big risks and, sometimes they're rewarded for it, and sometimes they're not, but their films are always polarizing with some people loving them and some people thinking it's the worst crap they've ever seen.

On the other hand, you have a really successful company like Blumhouse that probably hasn't taken a huge risk once in their life. Every film they make looks the same, is paced the same, and feels like it was written by the same horror plot generator.

People say film is more diverse now and maybe it's true in terms of casting or people behind the scenes, but the stories that are being told aren't diverse at all. You have so many screens devoted to one Marvel movie and then a few lukewarm reboots in the other auditoriums. In the 70's, 80's, and 90's, it wasn't unusual for a rom com to be playing next door to a slasher movie that was right next door to an Oscar bait drama that was right down the hall from a big superhero movie. There was more variety.

by Anonymousreply 2511/20/2020

r11 and r23 are right in that fragmentation has both diminished and expanded artwork.

Now anyone can get their artwork distributed and offered to the entire world, thanks to the internet.

But nobody's buying the same things anymore and one artist doesn't stand to make as big a killing or be a household name anymore.

It's great that we're all not captive to a handful of distributors anymore. But we don't all share the same pop art, either.

by Anonymousreply 2611/20/2020

What do some of you mean by creativity? List creative artists.

by Anonymousreply 2711/20/2020

r9 blame overstuffed MFA programs

by Anonymousreply 2811/20/2020

I don’t think that people are any less creative. However, I think music, art etc.. have become too commercial and streamlined. Things are made to make money, and not to express ideas of feelings.

by Anonymousreply 2911/20/2020

The problem with music, TV shows, and movies today is that people don’t have interesting stories to tell anymore. Everything is about shock value or just trivial stuff.

by Anonymousreply 3011/20/2020

Original works are def. in the past. Now, everything is a shitty remake.

by Anonymousreply 3111/20/2020

In many ways TV was better in the past. Of course there was lots and lots of junk but a mass entertainment show like Ed Sullivan would feature opera, ballet, modern dance, genuinely great popular singers. Talk shows like Suskind and Cavett would have stimulating conversations. Guests like Capote, Vidal, Buckley etc. NPR had live classical concerts and opera all the time. Even their cooking show was high brow with Julia Child. Even game shows, the original Password and of course Whats My Line? were so genteel , civilized and grown up. AND there was investigative journalism and news personalities like Conkrite and company. So much better then.

by Anonymousreply 3211/20/2020

I used to agree but I realised that I was making these judgements by focusing on sixties and seventies movies that were essentially classics. But really there was a lot of cliche ridden dreck at that time as well. When I stated branching out to more indie films, foreign films,etc I changed my mind.

by Anonymousreply 3311/20/2020

R29 I think that’s the problem. The creative industries are just that—industries. Their output is rarely art, just product, and that product is manufactured to appeal to as wide a demographic as possible. Sadly, mainstream movies and music suffer a lot as a result. It’s generally lowest common denominator trash; an executive’s boardroom brainstorming of what they think people want. But if you know how to look, there’s still plenty great creative work being made, it’s maybe just to be found in more niche markets.

by Anonymousreply 3411/20/2020

Yes, R32, media attempted to educate and encourage curiosity not play to the lowest common denominator.

by Anonymousreply 3511/20/2020

At one time people like Robert Merrill, Beverly Sills, Roberta Peters, Marilyn Horne, Anna Moffo, Leonard Bernstein, Pavarotti could be TV stars. Edward Valella, Baryshnikov, Nureyev, were household names. None of that can exist today. Impossible.

I loved how a goofy variety show could come to a complete halt for a gentle song with intelligent lyrics sung beautifully. We'll never ever see the likes of those moments again. All gone.

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by Anonymousreply 3611/20/2020

Agree with everything everyone has said, and want to put another thought out there (don’t scream at me).

A lot of genuinely good creative work has declined because technology has actively changed people’s brains, including the creators. The world of Mick Jagger did not have a Starbucks and a Gap on every corner and a Disney movie on every channel. Reagan and the aggressive corporatization of North America has made people actually think The Little Mermaid is a really fantastic movie. It’s good, but well, so what? People now have to actively loon for what was all around us before like someone mentioned about Ed Sullivan.

I’m not getting my point across that well, but I don’t want to yammer on and bore people to death.

by Anonymousreply 3711/20/2020

LOOK* for not loon.

by Anonymousreply 3811/20/2020

Says who?

by Anonymousreply 3911/20/2020

Marvel ruined movies.

Game of Thrones ruined TV.

Latinx music ruined pop.

Disney ruined Broadway.

by Anonymousreply 4011/20/2020

And dummies who use the word Latinx ruin the Spanish language.

by Anonymousreply 4111/20/2020

Definitely agree.

by Anonymousreply 4211/20/2020

Do you know wtf a Dionne Warwick is? I don’t.

by Anonymousreply 4311/20/2020

People are creative all the time, whether marketed or not. You have to go to Gowanus or Far Rockaway to see where artists interact and create today in NYC. Creativity never dies but some eras and places are more creative than others.

by Anonymousreply 4411/20/2020

What’s really in decline is two-fold: the lack of critical skills and the absence of professional standards. Opens a lot of doors for crap to get in.

by Anonymousreply 4511/20/2020

I think video games, social media and Netflix are certainly decreasing creativity. Creativity is often born out of boredom. No one is bored anymore.

by Anonymousreply 4611/20/2020

The last creative people-we're talking giants here-died in the 20th Century. Stravinsky, Strauss, Balanchine, Picasso and great talents in the performing arts. And moviemakers as well. Sjostrom, Dreyer, Renoir, Godard, Kubrick, Bergman...

Culture due to today's technology doesn't allow for the intense hot house concentration that created artistic diamonds. Is the talent there. Of course. Can it meet its potential? Absolutely not. It lasted (at least in the western world)for about 600 years. Not bad and there is certainly more than enough to fill one's life with.

by Anonymousreply 4711/20/2020

R16. Indeed. People don't learn instruments like guitar, bass, or drums anymore because there's no money in it. As long as synthesized music made by pimply Swedish guys in their basements remains popular, live music will suffer.

by Anonymousreply 4811/20/2020

Talent and creativity matter less now than ticking boxes. Thus a decline in quality.

by Anonymousreply 4911/20/2020

It doesn't help that creativity isn't encouraged in schools. Programs that encouraged art and music appreciation have been gutted. Even here on DL, many posters express disbelief that students would waste their time on anything that isn't STEM.

by Anonymousreply 5011/20/2020

I really notice a drop in quality in films especially. You can find great current music and writing but so many films these days terrible

by Anonymousreply 5111/20/2020

A majority of investment in entertainment is either translating this or than extended universe into film. Deadening it with sequel upon sequel. Even Broadway is mostly doing stage or musical versions other things. Artists are still putting out incredible things, but the industry lacks courage because in the end, it’s a business.

by Anonymousreply 5211/20/2020

It's all been done and been done better.

by Anonymousreply 5311/20/2020

I've tuned out of remakes and sequels. So let others watch I say. More for me to do as I'm more a creator than a consumer. That said, I need to watch the latest in The Crown.

by Anonymousreply 5411/20/2020

What r21 said. Young, creative people can't afford to live in NYC anymore unless they have parents with money to support them. Somebody like Madonna moving to NYC dead-ass broke and struggling is not an option anymore.

by Anonymousreply 5511/20/2020

Movie theaters are dying because, of course, Covid but it happened before that. People can get the movie experience at home on their giant 1080p HDTVs with Surroundsound. They don't need to go to a theater and deal with all the riffraff.

by Anonymousreply 5611/20/2020

The stuff about the money is perfectly true ('course, we probably wouldn't have Sondheim if his family hadn't had money), but there's a bigger thing.

Great creatives, even the most stunningly original, have nearly always drawn on the history of their art, or even related arts. Including the arts of foreign cultures (which I suppose you'd be cancelled for these days.) Their originality is more appreciated by those educated in the field because they understand in detail what is being built on or reacted to, but those who aren't expert can still appreciate their work because it is clear to all that it has substance.

The last couple of generations have been actively encouraged to ignore everything that has gone before, because it's "dead white males" or because it's not "relevant" to their young lives, or whatever. Both history and imagination have been reduced to sound bites. It's a tragedy, at a time when they have Google and YouTube at their fingertips and could learn so much so fast if they hadn't been talked out of it. Young adult fiction is a blight on the landscape - even the best students can get all the way through school without ever reading a classic novel, or even learning how to. The best you can hope for is that the ones who are interested in contemporary music will have some grasp of classic rock.

All this is why the popularity of The Queen's Gambit puzzles me. It's about a young person who wants to know EVERYTHING about her obsession, including all its history, so that her (much admired) original instincts can be polished by butting up against those ideas and solving, over and over, the problems of earlier games. The fact that she's a girl and the history is all males (and ?all white) does not seem to have been a problem, either for her or for the millions of viewers.

by Anonymousreply 5711/20/2020

Not very bright people teach and regurgitate half understood cultural theory.

by Anonymousreply 5811/20/2020

That too!

by Anonymousreply 5911/20/2020

They stopped playing sad songs on the radio twenty years ago so even if great stuff is out there you wouldn't be hearing it. You just hear shitass crap that's upbeat and "slaying".

by Anonymousreply 6011/20/2020

Close down three quarters of the colleges. Useless teachers, dull students, and a waste of money - only a few need go to college. High school is enough for most of us. Higher education is just another industry, a scam like insurance.

by Anonymousreply 6111/20/2020

Attitudes against education and enlightenment, like at R61, is why creativity is dead.

by Anonymousreply 6211/20/2020

You think the greatest achievements of civilization came from mass education? R62 you are a prime example of wasted education. But don't worry, most are like you. I hope you learned a useful trade like plumbing.

by Anonymousreply 6311/20/2020

R63 Your posts filled with errors are a greater testament to years of wasted education. No wonder you never aspired to anything beyond high school.

by Anonymousreply 6411/20/2020

"I know you are but what am I" eh? Grow up r64.

by Anonymousreply 6511/20/2020

[quote] In many ways TV was better in the past.

Aside from a few classic shows, I don't miss the old network television programming at all.

by Anonymousreply 6611/20/2020

Most of those old shows are unwatchable today. People are so used to cable and streaming dramas that have bigger budgets and not sets that look like they're made of cardboard, and of course more realistic depictions of what life is like.

by Anonymousreply 6711/20/2020

What do you expect in a fascistic police state where commerce/war is everything?

Education and independent thought come dead last and next to last in the U.S.

Instead of "Where's the beef?" the watchword is "Where's the money I don't have to make any effort for?"

by Anonymousreply 6811/20/2020

R62 this might interest you but read the entire essay. This is just a section pertinent to my views about mass higher education.

"Turchin opposes credential-­oriented higher education, for example, which he says is a way of mass-producing elites without also mass-­producing elite jobs for them to occupy. Architects of such policies, he told me, are “creating surplus elites, and some become counter-elites.” A smarter approach would be to keep the elite numbers small, and the real wages of the general population on a constant rise."

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 6911/20/2020

[quote] Even here on DL, many posters express disbelief that students would waste their time on anything that isn't STEM.

R50 I agree that the educational emphasis is now on STEM and music programs are gutted from the system although research shows a connection between math skills and musicianship. The same part of the brain is stimulated by numbers as by music.

by Anonymousreply 7011/21/2020

STEM is just a politically correct way of saying, "Become a software engineer or a stockbroker." Math is to make money and science to invent the next iphone.

Thank goodness the world is still full of bright, curious humans who refuse to be reduced to commercial products/shills. But they don't make any money, usually, and have to battle bureaucracies to get anything to the public.

by Anonymousreply 7111/21/2020

Most of STEM should teaching a trade like turning computers off and on again, or how to administer anesthesia.

by Anonymousreply 7211/21/2020
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