In Europe, for example, some of the social problems have already leaked through into some Wallander episodes. And that was years ago, before the issues really exploded. There is fertile ground for many, many stories with a contemporary basis. The same is true of Russia and Eastern Europe, which could go on for a very long time creating stories based upon its past.
I'm alluding to problems that are not of the standard American ilk that have to do with drugs, corrupt police, people in peril from intruders, and people anxious to kill their mates for insurance. I'm referring to very real social and cultural problems, but I'm being vague to avoid arousing political factions on this board.
Neo-noir is a dark canvas that can get at these matters and move people while exposing intense emotions and capturing our interest. Ordinary dramas about these subjects are bound to help themselves to neo-noir treatment.
There's no market here to speak of for stories rooted in the concerns of other peoples. I'm talking only about artistic possibilities. The Korean cinema has shown some light on this, although some stories have taken the safe route of serial killer material. The Hong Kong cinema has been devoted to action/romance and police subjects. It hasn't opened up. The beauty of Bergman was how far he went in non-traditional ways and stories. His creativity shows what can be done. Tarentino, who made a name, has his own peculiar interests, but building stories on social backdrops is not one of them. Spike Lee tries, but the results are often a mess. He did well with Malcolm. Most do not even come close to "Nothing But a Man" or "Killer of Sheep".
We've seen a neo-noir cinema that has turned inward to the identity of the person, and this is a dead end.
I can't say I've thought through these neo-noirs enough to characterize their thrust. I'm recording raw impressions that need a lot more thought than I've given them.