by Gabriella Gatchalian
Entertainment is used to give some sense of pleasure towards its viewers, the amount of details that is put in entertainment is meant to make sure that the viewers will continue to give their attention throughout. Movies for example, are most prominently used to entertain by any means necessary, meaning movies can project fictional stories or reenactments of true scenarios with the use of various props and materials that will sustain viewers’ attention.. However, the effects of the influence movies have on the minds and actions of viewers are often not talked about in media. The most susceptible victims of the media are teenagers, according to research done by Harvard Medical School which states, “[through the usage of f-MRI scanning] young brains have both fast-growing synapses and sections that remain unconnected. This leaves teenagers easily influenced by their environment and more prone to impulsive behavior.” This research shows how the environment that teenagers surround themselves with can greatly influence their minds and actions.
The susceptibility of teenagers to media influence makes movies prominent in impacting their minds. The ability of movies to influence the minds and actions of teenagers has been an issue that was brought to life when movies started to include the usage of drugs. The injustice that occurs with the utilization of drugs in movies is the romanticizing effect it has on the viewers. Movies rarely show the actual psychological effects of drugs. Most movies focus on the satisfaction of the drugs and not the downfall of a person after the effects of the heinous substances wear off. The aspect about movies that everyone has to understand is that they are designed to entertain. Therefore, to find a movie with an accurate portrayal of actual events is rare, as even tragedies are shown with great exaggeration to encourage people to continue watching. Movies are forms of entertainment that often show an unrealistic view of real life events. Drugs are a real-life issue, and the real-life effect of addictive substances are constantly removed from the final product of a movie.
Movies, especially ones with great aesthetic, can lead to the romanticization of horrid events; the usage of hardcore drugs is an important example, for it desensitizes teenagers to such serious issue. Movies that demonstrate a temporary satisfaction from a drug that actually permanently damages brain connections give a wrong projection of the truth to teenagers. This is an ongoing and complex problem, however, the normalization of the consumption of drugs as movies do is a problem that can be easily changed. Even though the main purpose of movies is to entertain, the fact that people are easily influenced by anything the screen projects should lead to a change in the way serious issues are portrayed.
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