Hol­ly­wood’s sec­ond chance

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE -

wal­lets just to ad­mire the vis­ual ef­fects and spec­tac­u­lar sce­nar­ios,” says ZuoHeng, deputy direc­tor of cinema stud­ies at China Film Ar­chives.

He adds that the skep­ti­cism over the pop­u­lar­ity of for­eign box of­fice bombs will “wake up” some movie­go­ers and raise their ap­petite for good sto­ries.

“Af­ter a round of fierce de­bate, peo­ple start to re­al­ize they can have bet­ter choices,” he says.

China Daily film critic Ray­mond Zhou likens the cur­rent phe­nomenon­tothe­boomofthe 1980s, when most Chi­nese only trust­ed­for­eign­house­holdap­pli­ance brands. Zhou also pre­dicts the num­ber of “undis­crim­i­nat­ing” au­di­ences will shrink in the years to come, when they grow tired of com­mer­cial ti­tles with medi­ocre plots.

Cul­tural dif­fer­ences can also go some way in ex­plain­ing the phe­nom­e­non.

“Science fic­tion movies are a hit genre in North Amer­ica. Take Trans­form­ers 4 as an ex­am­ple, many Amer­i­can fans are familiar with the orig­i­nal ver­sion and are familiar with the ro­bots through comic books, the TV show and movies. They find it dif­fi­cult to tol­er­ate their beloved char­ac­ters and clas­sic plots in a new­movie,” says Er Ku, a Bei­jing-based film critic.

“But for the de­vel­op­ing Chi­nese mar­ket, which is lack­ing a ma­ture fran­chise, peo­ple are happy just to see their an­i­mated child­hood fa­vorites on the big screen, re­gard­less if it’s a good adap­ta­tion or not.” Con­tact the writer at xu­fan@chi­nadaily.com.cn

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