By M. MacLaird
Comparing a wide number of Mexican movies made out of the early Nineties to the current, this research examines how creation tools, viewers demographics, and aesthetic techniques have replaced in the course of the previous twenty years and the way those alterations relate to the country's transitions to a democratic political process and a free-market financial system.
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Extra resources for Aesthetics and Politics in the Mexican Film Industry
It also noted the new role of “brokers” in film production and the misappropriation of funding intended for creative work toward commissions to financial agents. It observed a tendency of films produced with EFICINE funding to align ideological content with the views of investors and lamented that because the tax credits were given for investment in production, there was no real commitment to distributing the film once produced (IMCINE 2012b, 17). In sum, the stimulus has acted more as a tax shelter than as an incentive to invest in cinema, as was the case when Canada introduced tax credits for film production in the 1970s.
For example, Mexican scholar Enrique Sá nchez Ruiz writes, “Only with national public policy, oriented toward the development of the domestic sector, can we resolve the problems in the market brought on by the implementation of blind neoliberalism” (1998, 84). Using Canadian audiovisual policies as a model, he states that they are not “neoliberal” in that they do not leave the entire sector’s future at the mercy of market forces, and yet neither are they comparable to the economic protectionism applied in past decades.
The correlation between these films’ box-office revenues and the change in the movie-going demographic following the changes to the exhibition system are more orchestrated than even many filmmakers and industry members are aware. The end of Vicente Fox’s term witnessed a more than 120 percent increase in the number of feature films produced, compared to the previous term. 1 The achievements of these filmmakers abroad and of several emerging filmmakers working in Mexico but presenting their films in international festivals helped to improve the image of Mexican cinema in the eyes of its national audiences, its cultural institutions, and the private business sector.