Violence In Movies Essay, Research Paper
VIOLENCE IN MOVIES
The last few years have seen an increase in violence in movies. Action movies seem to get more ‘exciting’ than the previous movies each year and therefore, more violence is shown. Many people complain that violence is influencing our country and it’s youths which causes many youths to fascinate about violence, eventually experience the fascination of violence for themselves and go crazy – go on a killing spree or something similar.
Violence in movies do in some way affect youths and people in society. It affects people’s views of themselves, other people, the world and people’s thoughts on certain things. Beliefs or values and attitudes may be affected by violence in movies. For example, if a certain person is a racist and believes white people are superior to black people, they may watch a movie which displays racial discrimination, such as ‘American History X’, and after viewing violent action against blacks, the person may decide to take action and go out and kill black people. This is an example of someone’s beliefs/values and attitudes being affected by violence in movies.
It is believed that whatever is seen at the movies, children will praise certain shows and characters featured and try to be like them. They look up to their hero and want to do everything that person does. In an action packed movie, the hero or the ‘good guy’ is loved by children and they may try to copy their actions, thus leading to violence. So it is believed that violence in movies will increase physical aggressiveness among children and violent criminal behavior.
One method by which violent movies may promote criminal violence is simple imitation. Two surveys of young American male violent felons found that 22-34% had imitated crime techniques they watched on an action packed movie. On the questionnaire I conducted, 60% of the people who participated in the questionnaire said they have an urge to go fight, kill, save people, etc, after watching a movie full of violence and action.
This is only an urge, but may still result in the action of violence taking place. Children do imitate the behavior of models such as those portrayed in movies and other things such as television. They do so because the ideas that are shown to them on television are more attractive to the viewer than those the viewer can think up him/herself. This can be seen with the advent of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Young children cannot seem to get enough of these fictional characters and will portray them often. But it is Not only can violence in movies inspire children to take action, but can also inspire and empower potential criminals.
Of course, not everyone who watches a Rambo or Terminator movie becomes a criminal. The harm of violent television is felt most by the already vulnerable segments of the population. Alfred Blumstein, dean of John Heinz School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie-Mellon, notes that “the glorification of violence on television has little effect on most folks, but it has a powerful effect on kids who are poorly socialized …. It dehumanizes them and becomes a self-fulfilling process.” Repeated exposure to violence in movies may make violence seem ordinary or normal to these type of people.
Perhaps all sides of the movies and violence debate can agree that reducing movie violence should be considered as efforts to change the conditions that make the children so vulnerable and dangerous in the first place. Maybe ratings of movies should be taken more seriously and be more strict so that children cannot view violence which would pollute their minds with violence and criminal behavior. In the questionnaire, the majority said that the movie ‘The Matrix’ entertained them. This is an action film, and when asked whether they have an urge to go fight, kill, save people, etc, after watching an action film contained with violence, 40% replied no. This may show that some people like to watch movies with violence – no matter how it is rated – purely for entertainment and that it would not effect their attitudes towards violence in a negative way.
These days, violence in movies are seen to be very realistic. The fighting, the pain, the blood and guts are made to look real. These are all done through the use of computers and digital editing. So the violence in movies may seem real, but in fact it is all fake and have just been performed by the click of a mouse. The question is, why do filmmakers show violence as their main subject in movies and why do they want the violence to seem real? There are many reasons to this. One could be to impress audience, another could be the demand for more action films, or another could be that action movies seem to be more popular nowadays. But the main reason would be to make the movie full of excitement which would most probably make the movie become huge and popular, which would then result in a lot of money for the filmmaker. This is not right and portrays filmmakers as selfish people only looking for money, as they do not stop to think that the violence could pollute children’s minds. Filmmakers could say this could be prevented by making the ratings high, but that certainly does not stop children from watching the movie. They may be taken in to watch it with someone older for supervision, or simply view it on video once it is released.
Fixing the problems of children and movie violence is not easy. There are many factors that have to be considered and people to be convinced. This problem will, no doubt, never go away and continue to get worse as the years go by. However, there are measures that can be taken to prevent the children from ever being exposed to such things. After all, what is the world going to be like when the people who are now children are running the world?