Thus spake Ang Lee
He said movies are a form of dissent.
"That's why we make movies. Otherwise, we just have a leader issue an order and we all follow. Why else would there be filmmakers like us? Why else would people lock themselves in a dark room and watch a movie together?" Lee said.
No film is agreeable to all segments of a pluralistic society, so films dissent by default. All directors know that not everybody is going to like their work. But most filmmakers don't try consciously to confront viewers outside their market niche; the former simply ignore the latter.
Replace the word "dissent" with "individuality" and Lee's remarks make a lot more sense. Directors are entrepreneurs. They call the shots on what product they sell. People lock themselves in dark theaters because directors manage to offer movies that complement their individual tastes. I didn't watch Corpse Bride and Wallace and Gromit to rebel - I watched to be entertained.