Fewer foreign films are appearing on American screens than 20 or 30 years ago. As a result, American audiences, unaccustomed to them, are often puzzled by what they see. Distributors of foreign films are tempted to import high culture films (drawn primarily from classic literary adaptations with some name recognition) or foreign box office successes, provided that the story is told in a linear fashion. The American attempting to see a foreign film in its native country must be prepared for any number of un-American elements, both thematic and technical. Americans depend on action-generated plots and want to know what happens next. Foreign films are often more ambiguous and rely on internal development, not through plot but through conversation. A survey of recent films made in France, India and Japan reveal the many cultural differences which make reading these films difficult for Americans. Yet, the prepared viewer can benefit from the experience and discover many things about a people and their culture through films, without knowing the language.
Garrity, Henry A.
"Reading Foreign Films Humanistically,"
Visions in Leisure and Business: Vol. 12
, Article 5.
Available at: https://scholarworks.bgsu.edu/visions/vol12/iss2/5