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Effect of Cinema on Society Bookmark and Share  
  Author Name : Harleena Singh Posted on : August-10-2009 Total Hits: 12234
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 “Film as dream, film as music. No form of art goes beyond ordinary consciousness as film does, straight to our emotions, deep into the twilight room of the soul.”- Bergman


Cinema is a powerful medium because of its influence to pack the worst things into the best packing and sell them to the viewer’s eyes. The message that is conveyed through the movie stays live on the spectators’ mental spaces for a long time. Once a viewer goes home after seeing a movie, they carry with them a message the filmmakers directly or indirectly had conveyed through the visual effects. A spectator returning from a cinema hall filters all the images seen and attempts to sort out the pleasure giving elements the crowd had adored.


We go to a movie to see something good, new, to liven up our brains and mind, to know what we don’t, to transfer ourselves into experiences that we have never known, to see through another’s eyes. A work of art in cinema attains importance when it enables us to experience and see through life at close quarters. Such films surely give real entertainment and pleasure to their audiences. Alas, the media and others have generalized an impression that the aim of cinema is to entertain people without engaging them in any sort of intellectual exercise. The feeling is that a film should never end leaving unanswered questions, and it should let the audience go home unmoved and unaffected.


India, known for its rich cultural values is now undergoing a very different phase. Where it’s growing economically, the cultural values are dying. Where do the Indian society and its youth get such trends and ideas from? Cinema and the exposure to the west, in its endeavor to copy the western lifestyle, the youngsters are getting way ahead of the west, without understanding it properly, are certainly a major reason of concern. The vulgarity shown in the Indian cinema has gone up effecting the mindsets of the adults as well kids. Over exposure of bodies, increase in vulgar gestures and nudity have reached the limits in the name of freedom. This is the a prime cause that the present generation remains confused with no place to go, as neither are they fully westernized nor have they remained the true Indians. They feel that by wearing short clothes, making sensual expressions etc, just as they see in the movies, they have become modern, where as modernism comes by your thoughts and not be exposing.


The Indian cinema has been known and respected for its high quality music and is a powerful entertainment medium in the Indian society. It is watched by all the members of the family including children, who see the songs etc on TV more than on the cinema halls. Scenes in the movies of rape, eve- teasing, ragging, groupism, and degrading the educational institutions, leave a bad effect on the minds of the youngsters. Violence, sexually explicit content, has also been instrumental in increasing the crime rate of the country. Movies like Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna justifies infidelity, Metro handles the sensitive issue of relationship, but such issues remain limited to the elite audience alone. Most of the times, we are left uncomfortable to see the movie with or parents or grandparents. Where the Indian mind set is still within a closet and people tend to believe that kissing can make a girl pregnant or talking about sex openly is taboo, we maybe a country westernized in our thoughts but tied to its traditions.


There has been cinema which could change the lifestyles of people and Mani Ratnam, Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen, Ritwik Ghatak etc have been a few visionary filmmakers in the recent past. We need more directors like them who would come up with true and experimental based cinema which would touch the lives of many of us. In the past the film directors had the transformed vision in their eyes; they had the courage to deviate from the safer path and tried their hands on issues that were relevant to the society. They tried to make the society a thinking and modern one.


Indian cinema needs to be more thoughtful. Unless the industry finds ways of encouraging new voices, audience matures to appreciate the non mainstream cinema; Indian cinema will continue to be an ugly, money making machine capitalizing on titillating a mass audience focused on pure junk.




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