Recently I’ve watched ‘Hunger Games’ and ‘Brave’. I also chanced upon Colin Stokes’ How movies teach manhood’ on Ted, his analysis was interesting.
In my opinion, Hunger Games is quite violent for children’s consumption but the key message of the movie is positive. The main character, is a strong heroine who is resourceful and selfless. Both Hunger Games and Brave starred a strong female protagonist. Like what Colin Stokes suggested that such movies could send the wrong message to boys.
But I’m not going to talk about manhood but media violence.
‘Media Violence’ means differently to children, a heated arguments can be as aggressive as two characters battling each other with guns. How vulnerable are children being exposed to media violence? We heard about the rising cases of school shootings across the world and according to a research1, the typical American child will view more than 200,000 acts of violence, including more than 16,000 murders before age 18.
Heroes are violent, and even being rewarded for their action as portrayed in the movie ‘Hunger Games’. They carry weapons to get rid of the ‘bad guys’. Children will perceived that using violence for a righteous cause is right in daily lives. Vulnerable youth who have been bullied may turn to violent means as a remedy.
Hence, here’s a interesting guide to picking the right movies to share with children.
1Aacap.org (2013) The Impact of Media Violence on Children and Adolescents: Opportunities for Clinical Interventions | American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. [online] Available at: http://www.aacap.org/cs/root/developmentor/the_impact_of_media_violence_on_children_and_adolescents_opportunities_for_clinical_interventions [Accessed: 20 Jan 2013].