In Recent Italian Cinema, two fundamental questions are asked: the first concerns whether Italian cinema, as national cinema, is in reality reduced to a niche market in its own territory. The second relates to what Italian audiences do with domestic films.
For nearly two decades, most Italian films have been produced outside box office returns, through a practice of subsidy and co-financing between many institutional and private entities. Thus Italian cinema has had to define its mode of production and use-value of films in a different way.
It is clear that it is no longer possible to separate national cinemas from the grip that the American film industry has on world markets, in terms of imagination and modes of production, distribution and exhibition. It is thus only by examining the multiple layers of description and analysis, which take into account the presence of Hollywood, that we can come to an understanding of what recent Italian cinema actually is.