Movies are our portal into another world. They were designed to give us a feel for what life could be like in someone else’s imagination. Movies are developed to engross viewers into a world they can’t touch or be part of first hand. In fact, much of the time many of its characteristics are not even explained to a great degree. Sometimes a basic plot and a few characters are introduced and the audience’s imagination itself is what captures their attention as they fill in gaps as and how they please. This itself comes from and leads to subjectivity and what we think and say about the movie is a difference of opinion.
Movies are designed. The characters, the plot, the scenarios and even the unexpected are in the grip of the director who oversees it from start to finish. In our own lives however we are already within that environment and we play our own characters. Here, we cannot and do not get the chance to see it from an objective or third party point of view because we are always involved in the current situation. As we are increasingly dealing with many many different aspects in our lives, we start to lose our shape as individuals. We stretch ourselves constantly to keep in our grasp all the little things we think make us who we are. We do not see that if we were watching from the outside in however, we’d be groaning and telling ourselves to stop taking the ‘obviously wrong’ course of action.
When we see a movie, we always want to be able to recognise and see a part of ourselves in each character. We look for ourselves in the varying scenes, similar plotlines, looks, interests and hobbies because as a third party we are actually looking to provide insight into ourselves. When we see characters we recognise in ourselves or others, we see a form of realism and can accept them in our own vision of the world. This way we can extend the meaning we glean from the movie to our own lives and a comparison seems logical. However, we still seem to make the same mistakes as those characters even when we know better. The reason for this is the same values have not been conditioned into us whereas in an unbiased position we act dispassionately and assess past, future and present to come up with an ideal solution. The movies that we watch are an avenue for us to see a simplified version of our own lives. Although many movies may not depict our lives like for like, they do provide insight into ‘cause, action and consequence’ with a variety of emotions that link them together. In doing so, much of what is told is also retold over and over again. We often step outside of ourselves to understand the optimal pathway. However as an ‘actor’ ourselves, we prefer to keep the charade of being unable to break through the character unexpectedly to ensure the story runs as smoothly as possible.