By M. MacLaird
Comparing a large number of Mexican motion pictures made out of the early Nineties to the current, this research examines how construction equipment, viewers demographics, and aesthetic ways have replaced through the earlier twenty years and the way those alterations relate to the country's transitions to a democratic political procedure and a free-market financial system.
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Additional info for Aesthetics and Politics in the Mexican Film Industry
In contrast to the groundbreaking aesthetics of the recent years, films with primarily commercial appeal but lacking strong artistic, narrative, or conceptual distinction proliferated during the Calderón sexenio, and many blamed EFICINE: “The increase [in investment] was such that producers like Epigmenio Ibarra, of Argos Cine . . began to question whether the tax exemption’s effect on the quantity of films produced wasn’t inversely proportional to the quality” (Peguero 2009). A report put out by IMCINE in 2012 stated that private investment has not increased beyond what the state matches in credits.
In 2011, filmmakers again came together and proposed a reform to current film legislation, hoping to increase the 10 percent screen quota to 30 percent. Under new attention directed toward Mexican film production and following the unexpected success of several privately funded films and directorial debuts, IMCINE was forced to reevaluate its own criteria for distributing funds and to respond to public criticism that saw the institution as representing an antiquated statist model of cultural production.
The appeasement involved extensive support to film production, including a major financial investment in reforming the BNC, the opening of the Cineteca Nacional and the film school Centro de Capacitación Cinematográfica (Center for Film Training, CCC), and the creation of three state-run production companies (Lay Arellano 2005, 51). This support helped launch the careers of some Mexico’s most important auteurs to date (considered Mexico’s original New Wave), including Arturo Ripstein, Jorge Fons, and Jaime Humberto Hermosillo; however, it also spurred an ideological rift between those filmmakers willing to work within the state apparatus and those who saw accepting subvention as complicity with the government’s repressive politics, particularly regarding freedom of expression.
Aesthetics and Politics in the Mexican Film Industry by M. MacLaird