Michael Moore, Traverse City Film FestivalPop-Ed: I review movies for a living and can count on one hand the number of smart, thoughtful, well-made American films released this year. I'm not talking about films shown in art house theaters or during film festivals. I'm talking about mainstream movies released in commercial theaters.

Are American films getting dumber? Why does it seem like there just aren't that many smart films made in the U.S. anymore?

The topic came up when I was talking to Michael Moore about his selections for the Sixth Annual Traverse City Film Festival, which took place a couple of weeks ago. He said the "Hollywood Machine" just isn't creating that many great films in this country.

"The money has really dried up since the crash," Moore told PopEater. "They only really want to spend money on sure bets. People don't want to take risks, so we're missing out on an American art form that could really speak to the country right now in profound ways."