I want to use the word "dominates" in a positive context.
Basically, I'm writing about a movie which is influenced by a certain culture. In this context, I want to write that this culture dominates the first half of the movie. However, the word "dominates" can be taken negatively, hence I'm searching for another word.
P.S. I don't want to use the word "influenced" because I'm already using it in a previous sentence and I would like to avoid repetition.