Do Films/movies alter culture?

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by Captain_Crunch, Jul 26, 2002.

  1. Captain_Crunch Club Ninja Valued Senior Member

    My question is do films (movies) alter the world around us? do children turn bad from watching too many films? The same is apparent of computer games such as Grand Theft Auto, it had been banned at one point (when the original came out) because it was believed it would glamorise crime. Do films/computer games do this? What do the people of sci-forums think?
    [in responce to other users saying that flaming has became too abundent - please keep this thread sensible folks.]
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  3. Pollux V Ra Bless America Registered Senior Member

    I think it's the other way around. Movies revolve around culture, for the most part. I love recognizing movies or old TV shows (like Star Trek) that are really grounded in the era they were made in. It's more or less a cycle, I guess. Movies define culture but if the movie is grounded in culture then the movie becomes popular and may edit culture itself. (inhales)
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  5. Clarentavious Person Registered Senior Member

    I most certainly think they do, but not to the extent that once a kid watches an action movie that means he is going to go out and shoot someone. To a lesser extent and in different ways IMO

    I would also agree that many movies are formed from culture. Once the suits in hollywood making these things find out what the demand is, and what people are going to pay to see, and what will influence their minds, yes, it goes along this way I think.
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  7. lixluke Refined Reinvention Valued Senior Member


  8. Tyler Registered Senior Member

    There are a select few movies who have that kind of affect on the (American, or Western) world. Grease caused a 50s revival in the 1970's in America. More recently you have movies like The Matrix which caused a certain group of people to become overly philosophical wondering if The Matrix is real (just a revival of the old I-may-be-a-butterfly-dreaming-he's-a-man idea). Generally though, there are movies with amazing power like this but only to certain groups. Jurrasic Park for instances changed the movie industry and special effects. Star Wars redefined science fiction for fanatics.

    More often though you will see art reflecting life in movies. What I find most interesting is when they do a movie set 40+ years ago and many of the actors have their haircuts from 2002. They make a whole costume to look old fashioned but the hair seems to stay the same unless it's a serious drama.
  9. Pollux V Ra Bless America Registered Senior Member


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  10. kmguru Staff Member

    If visual information such as movies do not have any effect on the human population, then the advertising group is definitely wasting billions of dollars that the companies could keep to improve profit. The truth is advertisement do work and so do other visual information. R and X rated movies desensitize people from a previous norm and so on. While American movies are not a representative of the social culture at large, overseas people actually believe such is the case and try to emulate such potrayal.

    Bottom line is movies, and media do alter culture slowly and subtly and vice versa. Hollywood would like you to believe otherwise lest they could be sued for manipulation. To think that there is a high degree of signal separation in every human mind is simply not possible the way our brain is designed.
  11. wet1 Wanderer Registered Senior Member


    This is an example that I have often had a problem with.

    The case in point is that many censors and right and left wings have sought to effect this topic. The thinking that if you watch to many violent incidents on TV on in the movies that you yourself think it alright to go do such. There are examples to support such and others that deny this is a valid idea.

    In favor are instances where some child thinks they can fly like a super hero and puts on a sheet for a cape and goes sailing out the window.

    Myself, I tend to think; no it is not as strong as that. I learned to read by comic books. One of those media that is desparately sought to be controlled. There is even a set of "rules" that the comic writers follow to discourage such behaviour. I have no thought that it would be nice to go rob a bank, rape someone, or go shoot some one because of what ever reason hit my head. In spite of learning of such actions through comics.

    I do agree with kmguru that you can become desentisized to seeing events of violent nature through their repeated visualizations by media such as movies and tv where graphics are a bit too real.
  12. kmguru Staff Member

    When such topic is debated, most people bring up (no offense intended, wet1) the extreme case of killing, raping and robbing banks. Life is not just that. There is a large amout of activities one goes through life good or bad - some have immidiate consequences while others have long term Karma (Banshee take note).

    While people may not go out and rob a bank, but they can surely cook the books or clean out your 401K - dollar value in billions. Whether visual information affects you or me personally is not the issue - whether it affects the culture at large.

    Now, we know that a commercial presented in just 2 minutes and poorly produced (low budget) does have an effect on the majority of the intended. So, it is logical to assume that a well directed movie will definitely have an effect (tear jerkers for example) on the populace - good or bad.
  13. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

    Films and movies, but people forget they were a script or a book to start with.

    For instance George Orwell's "1984", that changed the perception of the world or some people. It's constantly bantered about with "Big Brother" being the keyword of phrase constantly bomabarding the press releases from one psychological experiment to the next.

    Another, What of Isaac Asimov's Rules of Robotics (Was it "Metropolis"?), which is now apart of conversation when people discuss cyybernetics or artificial intelligence design.

    How about Mary Shelly's "Frankenstein", the subject of cloning now might not have been such an abomination if it wasn't for the understanding that such a creation might be percieved a "monster" and scorned by the world.

    There have been countless apocolyptic films ("Like Mad Max") perhaps this has allowed man to realise that blowing himself to oblivion isn't the best idea to make, so we've manage to keep most of the world in one piece, even ended a Cold war.

    Science fiction can be based on science fact, and some authors (notibly P. K. Dick) mentioned that it's all very well to build a utopian world like Gene Roddenbery did, but they found the worlds to be made more interesting when that Utopia starts to fall to bits.

    People have always seen what horrific events could befoul them from decay and chaos, and it has taught them caution in what they do.

    So in short, Fiction does help mold fact, Either as inspiration to help pioneer or just to make sure we don't make so many mistakes.
  14. Modz Registered Member


    I think that there is a high degree of truth in what you are saying.
    But one of the main points in this discusion is if the media has an subconsios effekt on people.
    I belive that you are right about the affeckt that books have on sociaty.

    But the very nature of books are are often to get message across.
    And even if it isn't, books usualy gets people thinking because u have to be active and and open when you read a good book.

    For eksample Dashiell Hammetts books from the twenties and thirties. That opened the publics eye to the coruption, crime and poverty of that period in american big city's.

    I also think that film has a very big effect og sociaty. But people often doen't think as much about it. It pushes the bounderies of sociaty in a more unkontrolled way.

  15. ssivakami Registered Senior Member

    Whatever each of us may individually opine, or believe ..... evidence suggests that this is not the case.
    There seems to be no considerable positive correlation between watching violent movies and being violent ... or between watching porn and commiting sexual crimes .

    - Sivakami.
  16. Agent@5 Registered Senior Member

    ahh cool i topic i know something about!! w00t!

    from my experience of studying the cause and effects of media in general, i think ive found that its a cycle that encourages each other... I mean look at you own life, how influnced do you feel you are by movies. I personally feel it could have something to do with the way i feel love could be, but then i shale it when i break away from those sterotypes.... I think thtats what movies are... sterotypical aspects of everyday life, blown up and dramatised for entertainment purposes... newspapers are the same. What we see a lot is what we call normal, and acceptable, if we see violence in movies, violence in movies is teh 'norm', but it being transposed into life is another thing... movie ideas have to come from somewhere right?
  17. kmguru Staff Member

    From the dark minds of the screen writers who see the world with their dark glasses ....drugs and drinks and women (or men) as appetizers...
  18. Agent@5 Registered Senior Member


    whoever they are, they exist in a society. Their thoughts and ideas come from experiences they have had through this society.
  19. Tyler Registered Senior Member

    Agent - Not always. In fact, many screenwriters of good movies (and by good movies I mean those not designed just to rake in money from teenagers and early 20s) take their experience from entirely different cultures and then try and incorporate what they like in said culture to modern/western society.
  20. Agent@5 Registered Senior Member


    tyler, i said A society....
  21. greenboy Registered Senior Member

    Start Trek changed American Culture even today all the changes were seen first in start Trek the show from the 60's our dear William Shatner influenced into the American Culture like no other actor did this before.
  22. greenboy Registered Senior Member

    Halloween is coming and all the horror movies in the media increased the violence in out society. And this is a fact.
  23. arauca Banned Banned


    yes they do . As I and many others that I know we come influenced by move. As I arrived I was very disappointed on what in reality I have seen, I wanted to get out of here. I went to a different consulate for visa . but I found a girl , and I go stacked here. I know other which had similar experience.
    So move are just propaganda .

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