Movies and their influence

By Abiyyu Putra Hassyah and Fadhil Ahmad Fauzan

We would like to be reminded of these feelings… 

It’s weekend, you and your family members are going to the cinema, the smell of popcorn, the loud voice that comes out from the stereo speaker, the laugh that comes out from the audience, the hero that finally defeats the bad guys, Juliet who finally confesses her feelings to Romeo, or the monster that finally vanished in the daylight. That’s the miracle of movies.

Some of these movies might have won awards, or maybe influenced people, even became a trend, or became a pop-culture…

So what is pop culture?

It can be identified as the current popular culture disseminated through the mass media and directed mostly towards young people.

‘Popular culture’ or ‘pop culture’ as we often say, is a term that was created in the 19th century that refers to a prominent phenomenon around the world. Movies and televisions are truly part of our world. Before that, it was the radio broadcast and silent films that shaped pop culture. These types of visual or audio entertainments are disseminated worldwide.

We all watch television and go to the movie theatres on a daily basis. In other words, our life has become ever more entangled in some ways with television and cinema. As a consequence, films and televisions have become ingrained in our popular culture. Radio, television, and the film industry are constantly reflecting and influencing our hairstyle, the way we dress, the way we speak, our lifestyle and perspectives.

A movie goer, Ahmed, admits that we now tend to follow actors and actresses in their social media to observe their lifestyle, and we also urge ourselves to watch certain movies although only to see our favourite particular actors performing in.

“The sheer amount of capital gained by these movies is a clear indicator of how many people are consuming this form of media. As movies have bigger budgets they also tend to not only produce films of larger scales in terms of their casting, creating the set and the production costs involved,” Ahmed said.

This has shown how the movie industry has been substantially investing on producing movies to attract a lot more audience. Since movies possess many unique features that are pleasing to the eyes and able to depict certain cultures, people have started to get interested to follow every picture they have seen in movies and consider them to be ‘cool.’

There are some mentionable movies that have shaped society, the way they behave or think in their daily lives.

For instance, “Itaewon Class”, the 2020 South-Korean drama series directed by Kim Sung Yoon, has influenced the Indonesian YouTuber, Jerome Polin, to start his own tea shop business because he was inspired by the plot of the series, because the plot revolves around someone who tries to be successful by opening a bar-restaurant.

“Because being a creator won’t last long, there will definitely be someone who is more creative. Someday I’ll definitely go down. At that time, I want to have other businesses to support me,” said Jerome.

Another one is Forrest Gump, where it is known for breaking the stereotype of a successful figure that is not dependent on someone’s IQ. In the movie, we can see that Gump had a lot of achievements in his life. Such as inspired by Elvis Presley to dance like him, becoming a successful owner of a shrimp fishing company, and becoming the first main investor of Apple computer. 

But that doesn’t mean that several pop cultures can bring positivity towards the audience. Some of the movies bring bad influence to their audiences, for instance, Jaws (1975) told the story of a murderous great white shark attacking a seaside village one summer. Despite the fact that shark attacks are and have always been rare, the video prompted a brief decline in beach visitors on both coastlines.

Another example comes from the film “V for Vendetta”, which is set in a dystopian London and features the mask-wearing revolutionary V inspiring the masses to fight back against the conservative fascist authoritarian rule. This he achieves by gaining control of the state-run television and radio networks (and by blowing things up).

Anonymous uses the same Guy Fawkes mask as the figure V to represent their group. The primary concept behind the mask in the film is that the group is collective, and that we are all a part of it in some manner as long as we stick together and fight; Anonymous utilises the mask as a symbol of anonymity for anybody resisting any sort of injustice everywhere.

Then, there is the critical problem today that parents and children do not know the difference between films for adults (17 years and older) and films for teenagers (17 years and under), so that today’s teenagers, who can be called children, do not know when it is appropriate to watch romance films, but because parents as educators in the household do not educate well, so today’s teenagers arbitrarily follow the heart’s desire to choose films without distinguishing.

Imagine today’s youngsters, aged eight to ten, already knowing how to tell the love plot that the film follows in each episode. And the author argues that this occurs in practically every location, whether urban or rural. Thus, the consequences or impacts that arise on the lives of teenagers in the community are damaging the character or behavior of children, such as children dating underage, forgetting learning activities, and the occurrence of juvenile delinquency for imitating various scenes performed by idols that smell of physical violence.

Thus, information from television, movies, and other forms of mass media in general has had a tremendous impact on how we spend our days. In today’s society, television, particularly movies, is unquestionably the most important source of information and pleasure. Talking about television appears to be talking about cinema, because television is unimaginable without film.***

(This article is written as part of pair assignment series on special reports for Feature Writing class)

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