3 reasons why watching movies is not a form of escapism



1. Movies reflect human nature.

While the world currently focuses predominantly on business (a profession not suited for everyone), movies enable viewers to reflect on themselves, enabling them to understand more about the intricacies of life itself. Philosophy and psychology somehow fulfill the same purpose but movies is a more accessible medium, as long as one has a basic understanding of how cinematography and editing work, both of which can be learnt through watching movies rather than having to read up on abstract theories and ideas.  In fact, movies is the easiest medium for one who is curious and eager to learn about life while broadening one’s imagination.

2.  Movies inspire.

While it’s true that not all movies inspire, it’s undeniable that at least some do. Think “A Beautiful Mind” and “October Sky”. Humans live and thrive on hope, and movies give one the encouragement and aspiration to excel in one’s endeavours. Of course, there are films with darker and more solemn themes but on the whole, it teaches us to both enjoy and cherish life, and live it fully by persevering and pursuing our dreams. While some might argue that movies exist merely to remove boredom of our existence, I beg to differ. I believe that movies exist to widen our horizons and give us the courage to dream, to explore beyond the dimensions of our existence, sometimes taking us to a world of fantasy, and sometimes putting us in the shoes of a protagonist from another culture – thereby revealing to us the multi-faceted aspects of life.

3. Movies  develop critical thinking.

There’s a reason why movie quotes are highly popular. This is because it makes one think about life even after the movies have ended. It’s true that some movies have boring one-liner dialogues but for every such movie, there is a remarkable one waiting for us to discover. Forrest Gump‘s ‘Life is like a box of chocolate. You never know what you are going to get” is a classic. The same goes for Spiderman’s “With great power comes great responsibility”. Hence, contrary to some common misconception that movie-goers are whiling away their time by watching movies, there are – in fact- many intellectuals among movie-goers, especially those who fall in love with art-house films.

Patrick Tay is an English Language and Life Skills Training Specialist who is based in Singapore. He has been teaching communication studies and international issues in polytechnics and writes regularly on various issues of interest in education, media, business and global issues at patricktay.wordpress.com. He can be contacted at teachingwitheart@gmail.com



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