Nightly News | December 18, 2011
>>> finally tonight, a feeling of nostalgia sweeping through hollywood . as we prepare to close out another year, the big movie studios are releasing the best they've got, hoping to strike gold this awards season, by reaching back in time. here is nbc's kristen dahlgren.
>> reporter: in a year of protests --
>> we will not go!
>> reporter: -- and unrest, filmmakers look to give us an escape. with the return to the past, and glimpse back at the golden age of hollywood .
>> forget marilyn monroe . forget hollywood .
>> reporter: from "my week with marilyn," a romantic slice of the screen siren's heyday, to the tree of life which transports movie grgoers inside life in the '50s.
>> it is the imagination that things were clearer and simpler in the past.
>> reporter: take the artist, shot in black and white , it is a silent film with the unmistakable aura of a bygone hollywood era. perhaps no film captures that yearning for the past like woody allen 's "midnight in paris".
>> it is a fantasy.
>> i'm in love with you.
>> reporter: where a modern day writer travels back in time to spend evenings with the greats like ernest hemingway and f. scott fitzgerald .
>> it is the movie of the year that encapsulates all of the nostalgia, all that longing for some time when things were more intense, more adventurous, more exciting.
>> reporter: this holiday season brings us "warhorse," it is steven spielberg 's epic adventure of a boy and his horse in world war i. the sweeping cinematography evoking visions of some of hollywood 's grandest films from the '40s and '50s. while "hugo" is morton score scorsese's own movie.
>> happy endings only happen in the movies.
>> reporter: movies that this year are full of history. filmmakers hoping the luster of the past is the gold of the future.
>> reporter: kristen dahlgren, nbc news, los angeles .