It is well known that the United States has a monopoly over the world’s film industry. Hollywood produces more movies that are seen across the globe than any other country and many of these movies reflect American values (380). Still, is this domination of the international market and its consequential spread of American values culturally impactful? There have been no real substantive studies performed that reveal a direct correlation between shifts in indigenous behavior and belief, and exposure to American cinema (334). However, this does not mean that American values expressed through film are not at least a part of the formula in the spread of Western ideology, as world leader Fidel Castro claimed in 1985 (374). There is evidence that brings this issue to prominent light in many countries and accounts for cultural impacts.
If film was not in fact impactful, why would “Third Cinema” be a common term and practice around the world (373)? Why would countries purposely be producing and supporting movies to counter American values and instill and return traditional indigenous values (360)? Certainly this reaction from growing film industries such as those in Korea and India are in specific reaction to Hollywood’s recent and prolonged domination. Movies are a medium that reach millions of people easily and contain countless messages, both perceived and subliminal. As Tomlinson suggests, however, in many cases indigenous peoples perceive even American values through there own cultural contexts, misinterpreting the intended messages. It is also claimed that these movies are watched and widespread simply for their entertainment, enjoyment and escape capabilities. Even if this may be a common case, it is well known that cultural imperialism through film is an issue and this consequentially gives more validity to the claim. So as concepts such as commercialism and individualism become more grounded across the globe, and cultures counter such ideology with their own cinema, America’s domination of the international film industry can surely be labeled a part of the West’s cultural imperialism over the world.