What are the most popular types of film in your country and why?
Answers to this question will vary widely according to the country concerned. For example, romantic feature films seem to
receive great popular support in India, and their stars are almost national heroes. This may be due to the lack of good, or indeed any television, combined with the instinct to escape from a deprived environment. In the West, films have not been the major entertainment medium for over twenty years. Almost every home contains a television set and much of what is left of the British film industry is concerned with film-making for this medium. Film stars in the old sense no longer exist. The great days of Hollywood ended with the last war. No longer do families make a weekly outing to the cinema. Today there are less than twenty films showing in the West End of London. In the 30s any provincial town could offer more than this . Today most cinemas have long since become Bingo halls.
However, the film industry, though small, is alive on both sides of the Atlantic, and When a good film is made there is still a make lot of money. Another point in its favor is that the quality o television is deteriorating and seems likely to become
atrocious when cable television is introduced. There will be even more space for rubbish and repeats.
During the past, twenty or so years much has changed in the tasty of filmgoers. For one thing, the cinema of today is the virtual monopoly of young people, unless a film such as ‘Gandhi’ with wide general appeal is put on. Deliberate attempts to entertain the teenager have produced many films with an accent on explicit sex and violence, though more recently such
‘Video nasty’ area. However, the government is trying to prevent home television sets.
One ‘clean’ though juvenile taste which is fairly new is for space fiction films. ‘Star Wars and ‘E. T.’ are a recent example
of overwhelmingly successful production. ‘The Return of the Jedi’ is currently showing in London’s West End
There is no doubt that current popular taste rejects films that set out to be amusing. The Days of Doctor in the House
of situation comedies, of film built around ‘stand-up’ comics such as Arthur Askey, have gone forever. They now form part of the television menu as repeats.