It is not a pressure conference to open the festival at all its simply about putting a face on a sense of nostalgia. On air host Robert Osbourne brought forth some reasons why people watch Classic film that never occurred to me. Amazingly these experiences were part of me which I did not take into account.
It was mentioned that the TCM network could be classed as a nurse of sorts. Countless letters are received saying that networks gets people through periods of personal loneliness, periods of unemployment, a loss of loved one, or any number of life transitions.
I for one have gone through a medical convalescence a few years ago of six weeks of rest at home. I would watch one film sometimes two beginning very early in the morning as it was my habit to get up at that time. I was pretty much restricted to movement although encouraged to walk which I did. It was pretty cool to be able to catchup on many of the pictures I had stored on PVR. My medical troubles were short as l was fortunate to heal very fast. It is insular of me to not think of this for a person with a long term predicament.
Robert Osbourne mentioned this very well when he said that with our current world situation which is very dire why would people not want to see something uplifting. The network has a tremendous loyal following that is like a family which no other network can boast. You don’t see conventions, festivals or cruises for other networks. Yes it is in business to make money which it must do to continue. Some would say that networks such as this are selling your past back to you which is fine since that was what the Studio system did in the past. Movies eased people though the Depression, wars, societal transitions with larger then life faces. Monetary escape from what was going on which is pretty good for a dime.
Today people want realism or the opposite through effects. Movies have always been a product of their time as audience change. They are still an escape which is the common denominator even if the faces today are not as dynamic.