American Graffiti (1973)

The year 1962 was still the 1950s in George Lucas’s small California burg, where, for some, Buddy Holly’s death marked the end of something grand, and the looming threat of the draft and Vietnam meant that something else entirely was on its way. How could the antiseptic overlord of the Star Wars industry have thunk up something so charming, spontaneous, idiosyncratic, and humane? A 1970s masterpiece, this film marks the beginning of an entire culture phenomenon: retro cool.

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