Despite the fact that Hollywood films are popular all over the world, many believe that foreign films are better. Critics’ dislike of Hollywood films’ is due to the straight-line plots of the films in which nothing is left unclear, unsettling or unexplained and every shot is justified by a link to strictest cause and effect. Hollywood films are often viewed as dulling the mind. In this country people generally view films for mere entertainment. Many recent films support this stereotype of American culture. Special effects, violence, and actors’ names (despite level of talent) are often major themes that bring Americans to the movies. While most Hollywood films are made purely for entertainment value, many foreign films are entertaining as well as forcing the viewer think and question their surroundings at the same time. This is true of many foreign films I have seen.
The first film that comes to mind is Godard’s Masculine-Feminine. One of the themes in this film is the constant questioning that goes on between the characters. Through this interrogation, Godard is able to explore the different relationships between the main characters. The interrogation that happens in the bathroom between Paul and Madeline is a perfect example of this. They spend a good ten or fifteen minutes discussing how they feel about love and relationships. Another scene where interrogation plays a major role is the scene in which Paul is interviewing the model for the magazine. In this scene, the characters discuss multiple topics. They range from politics to love. This is something that is not often seen in Hollywood films. In general, the American public is more interested in fast-pace scenes often containing sex and violence.
The interviews in Godard’s movie are not the only thing that makes the viewer think. Much of the movie is based on political discontent and the future of the next generation, which Madeline at one point refers to as “the Pepsi Generation”. The film questions people’s loyalty to each other through the various murders that appear to go unnoticed. In the very beginning of the film, we see a woman shoot her male companion at a table near Paul and he does not notice. He looks up and then returns to his coffee and newspaper. The same thing happens on a subway car. Through this Godard seems to ...
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...ed upon the battles in space and the effects associated with the battle. For instance, the “light rays”, sword that look like flash lights and when held appropriately a ray of light becomes the blade of the sword, are a part of every actors costume. Hans Solo, a pilot of a battle ship, becomes a hero for saving Luke Skywalker’s life at the end of one of the films. The special effects are so entrancing that the audience forgets to notice some of the more intellectual themes in the movie. For instance, many critics have commented that the film deals with issues such as the evil nature of Communism- Darth Vader and the Empire being the communist nation and the Rebellion being the Democratic nation. In the triology themes like this support the special effects while in foreign films trhe special effects tend to support the story line.
Eventually, Americans, as well as Hollywood, can begin to appreciate a more intellectual type of film such as the films popular in Europe and Asia. We need to learn to be willing to open our minds to new possibilities and new ideas. Once we are willing to think for ourselves occasionally, Hollywood can stand out as the film capitol it supposedly is.
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