Hollywood bitterly clings to some topics more than others.

Consider these recent examples:

  • Watergate? We’ve got yet another film on the subject coming soon.
  • The Iraq War? The flow of movies stemming from that conflict continued in 2017.
  • The Hollywood Blacklist? Bryan Cranston earned an Oscar nomination for 2015’s “Trumbo,” and don’t be surprised if more movies follow.
  • Which brings us to climate change. This season already promises one climate change-themed tale – the long-awaited sequel to 1982’s “Blade Runner.”

Turns out “Blade Runner 2049” won’t be alone. Director Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” follows an ordinary couple (Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig) who undergo a shrinking process to streamline their lives.

As Peter Biskind wrote in Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, old Hollywood died by the end of the 1960s, in part because it kept trying to use the same playbook, despite audiences having moved on. The musical had been a staple of Hollywood since sound had been introduced in the late 1920s. And as late as 1965, 20th Century Fox had a huge hit with the Sound of Music. So old Hollywood kept churning out musical after musical after musical into the mid-to-late 1960s, with increasingly diminishing returns, until the old guard collapsed. MGM, the home of the big budget musical in the 1950s and early 1960s, effectively went out of business, and numerous other studios teetered on the brink of bankruptcy. By then, the musical was 30 years old, and hopelessly out of style. Today, the enviro-doomsday film is almost a half century old, and is equally due to be put of pasture:

Old Hollywood never got the message then that its formula was exhausted — no one should expect them to listen today, either.