Film Problems

If you want to characterize American film today, you can't help but talk about the over-investment in special effects. The logical extension of this tendency is in the video game, for which production costs are similarly prohibitive for the independent. Video games narratives are already almost entirely subsumed by the techniques of production and the will to market formulaic "sure things." Cinema and video games are converging upon these deficiencies.

Obviously there are American Filmmakers who avoid this trap, but when I talk about the strengh of non-American cinema, I'm talking about cinema that isn't bankrolled as a spectacle. Another factor that leads me to be critical of Ameircan film, and pop-culture in general is that, thanks to the multi-million dollar promotion budgets of Disney, Coca-Cola, etc., the American products are silencing cultural traditions abroad. As a case in point, take the musical traditions of France or Ireland. Both are rich traditions, but today they produce fewer 'hits' than their American counterpart. Notwithstanding the cultural relevance of local music, it is difficult to find radio stations in France that focus on French contemporary music. Instead one hears Pearl Jam and Nirvana. Is this state of affairs is a reflection of the superabundant quality of American media offerings? The displacement of local traditions in favor of material that reflects American experience is a very real trend.

One Parisian station boasts on their billboards that they play a lot of French music. Ironically, the station identifies itself as "SKY ROCK"!