For the world of cinema, the Government is evil. And from what you see, the feeling is reciprocal, so I do not deny the film industry reason. The Government, in general, takes more with the sector and has punished it by removing subsidies and raising VAT from the reduced rate to the general, just when there was a general increase in tax rates. The effect was that the cinema went from having a VAT of 8% to 21%.
Of course, an effect like that makes a dent in anyone. But the right question is whether it is fair. Personally, I have many doubts about whether culture should go at a reduced rate or a general rate. It is true that European countries usually have a reduced VAT for culture, and cinema falls into this category. I imagine it is to promote culture among citizens, but once again, I am struck by doubts about whether cinema is always a cultural spectacle or not.
As I say, surely the general VAT in culture has more of a vendetta than of reasoning, but I do not see bad that the VAT of the cinema is at the general rate, especially with the deficit that we have. The deficit makes us go into debt more and more, and I see it logical that it is done so that health and education continue to be at the disposal of the citizens, but … the cinema too?
And the same, I think of the subsidies. If there were control, I can admit that a sector is subsidized, so that a sector that could be an exporter, attract tourism, and create a country brand does not completely collapse. But most of the subsidized films are not shown and are simply a way to line their pockets. So I think it’s good to end the previous model and create a new one with greater control and prioritize quality over quantity. The delays in the new law are surely also a vendetta by the Government, which still has the “No to War” going through.
But even if there were a new subsidy scheme, they cannot pretend that the amounts are equal to or greater than those of the past decade. The State has a huge spending problem, and you have to prioritize. I think it is more important to invest in research than in the cinema because most of the cinema that is made is more linked to entertainment than to culture. But it sounds great to say the word “culture” a lot to disqualify those who are against subsidies.
Internet and downloads
What happened when we put together people’s preferences and zero offers on the Internet? That the downloads began. And it is true that right now, there is a home theater offer and also at quite reasonable prices. But the slowness of the sector to offer what the public demanded was decisive for the establishment of the customs of the people.
There is also another factor; the cinema sector continues with a fairly old distribution model. They want it to be broadcast in theaters first, then rent / online, last sale. Gentlemen, people want to see the film at home on the day it is released, and if there is no legal offer and it is very easy to watch it through other channels, you are losing customers.
In short, we are facing a change in the business model, and cinema is having a hard time adapting. They are in tow of the lawsuit and have not just found a solution. They ask for tougher legislation and will only be satisfied when it is more serious in the penal code to download a movie than to attack someone. And this cannot be the case, because if something is important in the legislation, it is that it be proportionate and that it be shared by the majority of the population.