Young people, who had anarchistic ideals and were spectacularly rebelling against society were called hippies. They did not want to fit in and work. The hippie name was first used in the American television on 22 April 1964, on WNBC TV Channel 4, in New York City, at the opening of the New York World Fair. Then a group of young people was protesting against the Vietnam War.
The common features of the members of the hippie group are that they grew the hair long, they wore a T-shirt and jeans and loved The Beatles. They were called hippies by the NYPD (New York Police Department, New York Police) officers and the reporters. In the spread of the use of the word hippie, Herb Caen played a big role, who was the journalist of the San Francisco Chronicle.
The hippie culture was originally a youth movement that emerged in the early 1960s in the United States, and from there spread to all over the world. The hippie word is derived from the English word hipster, which initially meant the people moving to the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco.
The Hipsters inherited the counterculture values of the Beat Generation, formed their own communities, listened to psychedelic rock, became followers of the sexual revolution, and used marijuana and LSD to discover the alternative side of consciousness.
The characteristic figures of the counterculture of the sixties and seventies have been portrayed in a plenty of forms: films like Hair and Forrest Gump were made, but Jack Nicholson, Jeff Bridges and Joaquin Phoen also took a large part in the age of liberty.
Among the inter Lars von Trier’s name is one of the founders sold Dogma 95 movement, the Danish Thomas Vinterberg directed the first Dogma film (Birthday), but most recently in 2012 threw really great, the film Hunt was then nominated for an Academy Award as well.
Latest creation, the partially autobiographical mindset is stitched in the communal Dania during the seventies, where two guys (Ulrich Thomsen and Trine Dyrholm) inherited a huge house and a decided to found a commune to friends and acquaintances and total strangers to share the cost – and the rest of their lives together.
Let’s now investigate the top 6 movies about the hippie era:
6. Easy Rider
One of the most famous and most sorrowful ballads of the hippie culture was directed by Dennis Hopper, who later became the most wanted impersonator of psychopaths and criminals- and who in fact provided his most unforgettable portrayal in David Lynch’s Blue Velvet.
The Easy Rider actually became a first generation cult film: basically, it came out of nowhere, then unknown young actors appeared in it – Hopper, Peter Fonda and Jack Nicholson with his frightening smile.
The film tells the journey of two friends who are looking for the absolute freedom while they ride their motorcycles from state to state – Nicholson, playing the role of the small-town lawyer joins them. The Easy Rider is impossible to explain and tell, it simply looks like a charming trip, that you have to live through.
The film was photographed by the brilliant Laszlo Kovacs who was one of the most influential cinematographers besides Vilmos Zsigmond in the Hollywood of the seventies.
5. The Dreamers
Bernardo Bertolucci started his career in the sixties and could get insight in the madness of the student revolts, forty years later, he tells the story in an embarrassingly personal film of the era when half of Paris is literally ablaze because of the protests.
A naive and all- American boy arrives in the French metropolis who is a maniac movie fan who spends each day in the Cinémathèque Française. Here he pals up with a brother and a sister who are rebelling against their parents’ bourgeois intellectual world, Theo and Isabelle – he will of course inevitably fall in love with the girl.
Bertolucci’s film is full of eroticism and political ideas, yet it is just moderately interesting, it is rather recommended for the lovers of the sixties.
4. Taking Woodstock
Ang Lee is a film director with thousand faces: he changes the genres and tones like other people change their underpants. Does this mean disloyalty or simply just curiosity and the desire for exploration? The well-known stand-up comedian Demetri Martin was helping Ang Lee to shoot this nostalgic film, that tells the story of the organization of the legendary Woodstock festival.
In 1969, Elliot, emerging graphic artist from New York moves back home in the sleepy little town living from agriculture, to help his motel owner parents. Elliot figures out to boost the business of his parents with a small music festival organized on the neighboring farm: we now know that the thing has somewhat grown out the initial plans – about 400 thousand people passed through the small town during the three-day event, which is a really big deal.
Ang Lee’s charmingly fresh film tells the story of the chaos lurking in the background, and how the conservative people of the town accept the youth rebellion.
3. The Big Lebowski
This film was shot in the nineties by the Coen brothers and some consider it as the twin piece of Inherent Vice: the hero who has been stuck in the bygone hippie era finds himself in the middle of a similarly messy crime.
The Coens, who are kept count of being the masters of ironic humor genre films (Fargo, No Country for Old Men, Ave Caesar), commemorate at the same the tough comedies of the sixties and seventies and the film noirs with untraceable narratives. Especially John Huston’s The Big Sleep, which is a classic.
Lebowski, better known as The Dude, the scallawag idle does not care about anything apart from smoking marijuana and playing bowling, up to the moment until he does not slip into a messy kidnapping. The Big Lebowski is a damn funny memento of the forever gone Hippie Era, that we remember just because of a few characters who have been stuck there.
2. Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump is definitely a prototypical sentimental film of the nineties and no one can take away this serious title from him. Robert Zemeckis became famous with the Back to the Future trilogy, but he won the Oscar award with this bittersweet American Svejk story. Tom Hanks played a major role in the success of this film, which we re-watch willingly anytime.
Hanks performs as a well-intentioned, mentally retarded guy who drifts through the second half of the twentieth-century American history, while unconsciously he becomes one of those, who shape determinedly the flow of things. The film does not directly touch upon the waves of hippie and other counterculture movements, but the Black Panthers occur.
Obviously, we see things through the naïve filter of Forrest Gump, so the episode actors rebelling against the system get ironic quotation marks.
The film’s most distinctive and best episode is perhaps when Forrest, who freshly returned from the Vietnam War accidentally floats to the center of an anti-war demonstration and he is called up on the stage to give a speech by mistake.
1. The Trip
In the sixties the counter-cultural movements were quite spectacularly present in the everyday life of the US, so Roger Corman -known as the producer of the cheap B-movies- did not bear down on the subject so rapidly by mere chance. Corman, in fact, produced dozens of movies that were mainly attractive for young people: motor-cyclist movies, cheap horror movies, and erotic teenager movies.
With The Trip Corman was focusing on the psychedelic drugs which were defining the hippie counterculture of the sixties. He advertised the movie with the slogan that if you watch this movie then you will get in a condition similar to LSD.
Corman cleverly mixed the visuals of the contemporary avant-garde movies with the popular story: a film advertising man, who is disillusioned of the material world tries LSD to his friend’s urging. The film consists almost entirely of confusingly spectacular visions. Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda would not be such good buddies without this movie.
Thank you for reading our article about the top 6 movies about the hippie era. We hope that you will also read our next writing about the top 6 movies about fine arts.