And people say that foreign film is inaccessible.

  • elroy

    Moderator: EHL, Arabic, Hebrew, German(-Spanish)
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    At least from a modern perspective, I would say British and Australian films are included.
     

    elroy

    Moderator: EHL, Arabic, Hebrew, German(-Spanish)
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    I don’t know about the Academy Awards, but for me as a layperson, a British or Australian movie definitely qualifies as foreign. In other words, I would not bat an eyelid if they were included in a foreign film festival.
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Given that in American English the word “cinema” is never used in the sense of “movie theater”, would “foreign cinema” have worked as well?

    And people say that foreign film is inaccessible.
    And people say that foreign cinema is inaccessible.
     
    And people say that foreign cinema is inaccessible.:tick:

    That works in British English, where "cinema" is an everyday word, but not in American English. We don't use the word at all except in the names of things, like movie theaters and magazine or websites. Americans know what it means in British English, but an American using the word in America is likely either joking or mocking the pretensions of film snobs, the only people on this side of the Atlantic likely to use the word seriously.

    Otherwise, it seems that every possible interpretation of "foreign film" vs. "foreign films" was discussed exhaustively back in 2017, so I'll only say that in the context of the comic strip presented in the OP, it's obvious to me that Hobbes (the tiger) is talking about foreign film as a genre, and doing so in a deliberately pretentious way to set up a humorous contrast with the lowbrow nature of the film being described, apparently a sequel to or knockoff of Godzilla.
     
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    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English (US - northeast)
    Given that in American English the word “cinema” is never used in the sense of “movie theater”, would “foreign cinema” have worked as well?

    And people say that foreign film is inaccessible.
    And people say that foreign cinema is inaccessible.
    The example is not talking about a movie theater, and saying it is inaccessible. It is using "cinema/film" to mean "the entire industry, including all movies". American English uses "cinema" with that meaning.

    That works in British English, where "cinema" is an everyday word, but not in American English. We don't use the word at all except in the names of things, like movie theaters and magazine or websites.
    I disagree. I've heard it many times in AE. I saw the word in many US magazines (before the internet). Check the WR dictionary (American English part). This is the only defintion of "cinema" that is not marked "British":

    cinema (noun) 1. motion pictures, as an art or industry (uncountable)
     

    Chasint

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Given that in American English the word “cinema” is never used in the sense of “movie theater”, would “foreign cinema” have worked as well?

    And people say that foreign film is inaccessible.
    And people say that foreign cinema is inaccessible.
    I read through this whole thread with great amusement. There has been a lot of nonsense talked.

    And people say that foreign film is inaccessible

    We do not have to be English, American, Australian, or Bulgarian, to see that "film" in this sentence is being used a as non-countable noun. For simplicity, and just to see the grammar, we could alter the sentence as follows:

    Foreign film is inaccessible

    In the context of the medium (i.e. film), we can see that the structure is: <adjective> <non-count noun> <singular verb "to be"> <adjective>

    I am British and I have no trouble seeing that this refers to the genre film. Likewise, if the sentence had been "And people say that foreign cinema is inaccessible", it is obvious that cinema is a genre.

    Indeed, even if the sentence had been, "And people say that foreign flickery-magic-lightbox-with-noises is inaccessible", it would still be clear that we are dealing with a genre: Why? Because (1) there is no article in front of flickery-magic-lightbox-with-noises and (2) it is followed by a singular verb. Therefore it is a non-countable noun.
     
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