Why do old movies have such bad acting?

I was watching a few black and white movies lately and the characters acting was not believable in any way, no real emotion shown, and any emotion that is shown is over dramatized. Don't get me started on the accents. Casablanca? Germans with British accents. Why do you suppose acting was so unrealistic back then?

3 Answers

  • Anonymous
    7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Movies were a new thing back then. Before that they just had theatre so when they began making movies, they were essentially filming plays minus the audience. Around the 1950s method acting became popular with actors like James Dean and Marlon Brando. During this time exaggeration was replaced with a more subtle and realistic form of acting.

  • 7 years ago

    Low budgets. Taking the poor accents situation, it probably wouldn't have been easy to find a linguist to teach accents at that time. Also, it probably didn't matter so much. In those days everything wasn't re-watched and studied and edited over and over, it was more like theater. They weren't going to spend all day on one take, and an eternity editing.

    I think a lot of "good acting" is just good editing, disguised as acting. Which could explain why things are better now (which they really aren't, have you seen a movie lately? I haven't seen a good NEW movie in a long time).

  • 7 years ago

    Perhaps because the world is changing for the better everyday.

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