Have films increased or decreased in quality over the years?


Actually, in 1949, the n-word was used in Home of the Brave and Intruder in the Dust, and then used more-often in many other movies, but usually in what was called a social drama, highlighting problems with society.
I cant stand to watch a film that uses the "N" word a lot and that is why I refuse to see "Django".

Master of My Domain
I'm not that good at English, what does sideways-creased mean, Swan?
It means 'typical Swan joke'.

Increased in picture quality.
Decreased in content.
"Anything less than immortality is a complete waste of time."

I wonder if the question is "Does today's culture prevent people from creating or enjoying great films"
Will great movies make money
Will audiences tune out if somebody takes time to develop plot or characters
Will anybody watch a three+ hour film, even if it's fantastic
Some film makers seem to think the worst of their audiences. They feel that audiences have to be spoon fed, they have to resort to gimmicks to keep people entertained. I don't think there was some magic time in the history of cinema when everything was better, I just think that films are aimed at the lowest common denominator to make the most money and it has hurt the quality of films. There are current films that prove to be an exception.
I think a lot of today's audiences do not have the patience to enjoy may of the great films from the past because of some of the above listed qualities found in our culture.

"I smell sex and candy here" - Marcy Playground
I like big budget action, quality drama and small budget independent films. In my opinion, all three categories have improved immensely, with never before seen opportunities. Action improved in technology and special effects. Drama has improved with a neverending pool of excellent actors from all those great and original TV series we now have. Independent film must have some really great funding, talent and interest from rich stars, because I'm seeing amazing low budget productions (ex. Project Greenlight).

IMO there've been great films and crappy films in every decade. Nature of the beast.
Pretty much. There's been a wealth of content since the inception of film, both good and bad. Creative ideas are timeless, but cultural trends hamper creativity b/c of imposed limitations. Hollywood may pump out an overwhelming amount of trash and uninspired reboots/remakes nowadays, but there remains a strong underground circuit of interesting independent and foreign films that are easily accessible if you do some research. It really depends on what you're looking for. There's genres that are less prominent in certain eras, but the landscape of film as a whole always has something to offer and measuring an overall increase/decrease in quality decennially is a lost cause b/c there's simply far too much **** to watch before reaching a verdict.

The Zeitgeist of every era varies from filmmaker to filmmaker... but if we're talking strictly Hollywood then I certainly see a decrease in fresh ideas and creative application of said ideas. The decline pretty much has progressively snowballed since the end of the 'new wave of American cinema' in the 80's. Today it's almost as if Conservatism went full circle w/ PC running wild which makes the general commercial landscape feel like we're a giant step closer to Idiocrasy.

Please hold your applause till after the me.
The wide range of cinema has and always will be all over the place, a vallet of ups and downs. But in the past few years, it has definitely decreased, quite possibly due to the poison of cinema that for some reason people don't seem to realize is poison, Happy Madison.

Actors performances in films are probably better then they ever were. Take Heath Ledger as the Joker for example. The Tom Hardy's, the Leo's, the Christian Bales are hard to beat. Acting has gotten better. Movies necessarily haven't.

Take horror for example. Horror hit a peak in the 80's with the Freddy Kruegers, the Chucky's, and the Jason's.

Only the past 10 or so years, we ve had too many generic movies in all genres, too many unknown directors entering the scene offering nothing but cash grabbing movies, especially action movies, that doesn t mean there are no quality movies, but i think last decade we ve had so many bad directors making movies best example is( die hard 5) my worst 90 min spent on a action movie.

It's a difficult question. While visual effects have gotten more realistic, I think in some cases they are running out of fresh ideas and doing remakes of successful movies from the past.