There are a million and a half ways of justifying your mistakes and none but one is real. Bits and pieces of the previous precious line were also picked up from a movie.
It’s a lie if I say that all the to-know-vocabulary I learn is not from movies. What’s also true is that a lot of what I wear is inspired from those SHOWTIME and FOX shows. But to back my point – I don’t fantasise about killing my neighbour (who truly is a monster by significant standards) just because all of Dexter Morgan’s problems end with a ‘kill’ and a ‘dump in the sea’.
I will say that movies have made me immune to bloodshed and death to a certain degree. But I could never stop taking it all with a pinch of salt and a dash of disbelief. Like when things have gone out of control in a movie, I suppress my anxiety by telling myself – ‘It’s ok, it’s just a movie’.
I will go as far as to say that when I read news about murder, I end up imagining a rather gruesome sight in my head taken from one of those movies. And then when my imagination has reached it’s worst form, fear, distress, pain overpower the urge to be violent, you know if the urge ever occurs!
My mother like many other mothers follows all sorts and ilks of soap opera and movies very ardently; only she is an Indian. And as a teenager I would sit with her and watch them with her, relentlessly one after the other.
Take any latest Bollywood movie you want. I am going to pick one Indian primetime show for my convenience. I pick ‘Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi’ which roughly translates to ‘Because Once the Mother-in-Law was a Daughter-in-Law’. While the shows are insanely popular among SAHMs and housewives, every one of their stories revolve around (1) one very nice woman, (2) her husband who keeps dying and reappearing somehow, (3) her mother-in-law who is usually diabolical, (3) a vamp that-steals-the-husband and then a gigantic family of people with weird names.
So, every episode has a series of domestic incidents of one family member conspiring against other family members. Keeping in mind ONLY the joint families where crowds of relatives live together. For example a scene plays out, the evil mother-in-law sneaks into the kitchen and loosens the cooking pan’s handle with an actual screwdriver and when the poor but super nice daughter-in-law starts to cook in that pan, the handle breaks off and she drops hot oil on herself. More drama on that follows for a few weeks.
Ok. I am not explicitly saying that it’s silly but I do imply that it is.
I know a large part of the show’s viewership who’d think the scene above is something that maybe real. I don’t doubt that it is. All I am saying is if in real life someone conspires LIKE THAT against their own family member, they are basically termed – A NUTCASE. And for us normal people on the other side of the tv screen, that particular scene would draw nothing but mockery, and maybe some complete rejection.
The first shock came, years ago, when me and my brother were being our annoying selves and our mother cried at us – that she knows that we do all this as part of one planned ‘conspiracy’; and no, she was not joking that day. The only other time I had actually used the word ‘conspiracy’ in real life was while writing my school notes on Julius Caesar. Yes, them movies can do this to you. They can impregnate bugs deep seated in our brains and give us ideas (sometimes real bad ideas) of carrying out random imbecility. What movies cannot do is make you a person you are not! You know why? Because if you are not THAT kind of a maniac, even latently, you will not like some ideologies fed to you by a movie. And you know what happens then? You don’t like that movie and choose not watch it because there are tens of other movies in the same multiplex and hundreds of tv shows on the hundreds of tv channels to retreat to.
So I say crazy people will always find something to inspire them. But by and large, Sanity prevails.