Why American movies won’t die

Here is a well-linked to article about how American movies are dying in terms of quality.   Ross Douthat comments.  Most of the arguments are correct, namely that too many big budget movies require a “tent pole” in terms of a connection to a comic book, a famous book (Harry Potter), a TV show, and so on.  But the article is still too pessimistic.  Here are three reasons why movie quality should survive, albeit with some cyclical fluctuations:

1. The more centrist and mainstream the big budget movies get, the more opportunities are created in the niches.

2. Due mainly to digital editing, the costs of movie production and editing are falling.  That favors innovation.  Marketing costs are rising, due to an increasing scarcity of attention, and that favors blockbusters  Still, this latter factor has self-correcting elements, as mentioned above, and many forms of marketing (e.g., the internet) are cheaper than buying network TV ads.  The cost story is complicated, but it should not over the longer run penalize quality.

3. The U.S. population is aging and this will push movies away from some of their more juvenile shortcomings.


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