Movie Review on ” Schindler’s List ”


Schindler’s List (1993)

This is a movie based on a true story. Oskar Schindler is a very successful business man. He had good people skills that gave him an advantage to make friends with those high ranking German officers very easily. He played as the hero of this movie to save the Jews from the Germans. Schindler had save more than a thousand Jews by buying them from the hands of the Germans. In the Jewish’s eyes, his factory was being describe as the heaven or the Ark of Noah because they do not need to suffer from the German in his factory.


In the memory of Oskar Schindler

In this movie there are two psychological concept that can be notice which is the Resilience and The Lucifer Effect. I will start with the first concept which is the resilience. Resilience means that the tendency to cope with stress and might have the risk of relapse. In the movie, Amon Goeth was being persuaded by Schindler to not use violence in displaying the sense of being someone with power. He was being persuaded and stop to use violence in a few scene later. However, after some time relapse of his old personality reappear. This had showed that relapse may happens even the behavior had changed for a short period of time only.

In the concept of The Lucifer Effect, it state that even good people sometimes can turn evil and commit incredible act that may be wrong. In the movie, all the German soldiers were being given order to eliminate the Jews. Why will they kill the Jews by just simply put the bullet in one’s head with thinking the consequences about it? How can they be so cruel? In the study of Milgram on obedience he found that people will follow order blindly when the order is given from the authority that have power over them. Yet, there is still people resists the orders when they think what they are doing is wrong. Back to the Lucifer Effect, Phillip Zimbardo had conduct an experiment which is know as the prisoner’s experiment to study on this. He found that when people are being possessed with power, they will change their behavior. In his experiment, the prison guards were instructed to pretend to act like a guard but they had really express out their evil side instead of just pretending to be one. This had showed that when people is given power they will do something unbelievable with their authority power.

This movie was shown on a Good Friday and after this movie something just struck me. In this story Oskar Schindler spend all his wealth to save the Jews and he end up bankrupt and fleeing from the allied force. It reminds me of what Jesus Christ had done for us, he sacrifice himself for us even his life to save the entire human race. I will then end my words here. Happy Easter!!! =)


Oskar Schindler

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Movie Review on “Gandhi”


Gandhi (1982)

The story of Mahatma Gandhi was a very inspiring story to me. Gandhi is a personal all time favorite to me. The way he sees the world and his teaching is very unique in the sense that many of the great leaders had applied his concept. Gandhi was the father of India. He free India from the hands of the British but unfortunately was assassinated at the age of 78 on 30 January 1948.

From the movie, a theory from the social psychology had attract me which is the theory of persuasion. Persuasion is defined as a process of consciously attempting to change a person’s attitude through the transmission of messages (Franzoi, 2009). There are three factors that increase the success rate to persuade others which is:
(i) Likability
(ii) Similarity to the audience
(iii) Physical attractiveness

Based on the following factors, Gandhi who acquired at least two of the traits. Firstly, he acquired the traits of similarity to the audience. Gandhi is a Muslim and also a Hindu which makes him easily be accepted by the people of India. Besides, he came from a rich background but he give up his wealth and get down to the earth to be part of the poverty people. His act had gain the trust of many people and also the support of the people of India that lived in poverty. Try to imagine that if he did not give up his wealth, it will be harder for him to gain the trust of the people. People will not conform to your persuasion if they think that you can’t feel them.

Secondly, the similarity with audience had give an advantage to Gandhi to gain the likability by the public. he usually praise people on what they had done even they did bad things. In one of the scene where Muslims and Hindus are fighting, a man confess to Gandhi that he had take revenge on a Muslim child by killing the child. However, Gandhi did not curse him or disgrace him instead he give a solution to the man by asking him to adopt an Muslim orphan as compensate. From here you can see that this is also one of the reason that his order was obey by the public.

Another concept that I want to share is the weapon effect. In order to show to Gandhi that they had stop the fight between the Muslims and the Hindus, a group of Muslims people had drop their weapon in front of Gandhi. Mostly when people see weapon, people will tend to link it to aggression and this is the weapon effect. When the weapon is being drop which means that they willing to stay peace by stopping all aggression act. In most of the movies, they tend to show that people dropping their weapon to indicate that they are willing to stop fighting.

A quote that I find it very meaningful from the movie : “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind,” this is a wonderful quote by Mahatma Gandhi.

Movie Review on “Departures”


Departures (2008)— 礼仪师之奏鸣曲

This movie has a very good storyline and it is also quite touching. In this movie the main character — Daigo was a cellist in the starting of the movie. He was force to quit his job as cellist when his orchestra band was being disband and he decide to go back to his hometown to start a new life while searching for a job. Coincidentally, he found himself a job that he thought will be cool at first but then realized that he fall into the deception of the advertisement. The advertisement sounds like a traveling company but in the end he end up working as a corpse make-up artist. Throughout his work, he had a completely different view towards his job and he manage to proved to his friend and wife that the career he choosen is not something that need to be ashame of in an Asian context. He also forgives his father who abandoned him since he was young which was found dead at his room.

Why do they choose an cellist as the character?
I think that the reason they choose a cellist as the character because as a musician you will need to put a lot of feelings when you are performing your song. As a musician you will need to feel the song first before you can convey the message in the song to the audience. When in comes to the movie, making-up for the dead person can be something very easy. All you need to do is just put some color on the body to make it looks fresh then everything will just be fine. However, Daigo who first thought of this way too but was slowly melt into the true purpose of his career soon. As time goes by, he started to feel the perception of the dead person family and how does this person being viewed in the eyes of their family member. The concept behind this is that a musician can feel the spirit of the music and express it out beautifully to the audience. Similarly, when making-up for the dead body Daigo can feel how the family view on the dead person to help the dead person to make-up so that it matches the good memory that the person left for them. In the movie, the family member thanked Daigo for his make-up because he help them to retrieved many good memories of the dead person.

In the Asian context, people view the career that involve death as dirty and ashame. In the movie, Daigo’s friend prevent his wife and daughter to even greet Daigo because of his job. Daigo’s wife left him because he refuses to change his career where his wife thinks that the job is very shamful to her. I think that these people are great. They willing to sacrifice themselves to work in those career that people look down onto. Try to imagine the world without them. Who will handle the dead people?

Movie Review on Sybil


Sybil (1976)

This is a movie about a girl who was diagnosed of Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) which means she have many different personality inside her body. From what the movie had film out, I personally think that this movie did a great job on showing the public on how a DID patient behaved. The symptoms that the movie portray is as accurate as what is found in the DSM-IV. It is said that what the movie showed is accurate because:

i) The main character Sybil will experience amnesia and do not remember what she did when the appearance of the ‘alter’ (the other personalities) take over from the host (the original personality).

ii) Sybil had more than 2 personality states . She had 13 personality states including 2 personality that belongs to two young boys in the movie.

iii) The switching of personality had been shown in a very clear way to let audience understand which personality state is Sybil experiencing.

The movie also points out 2 important causes of DID which is:

i) Traumatic childhood- Sybil was being abuse by her mother when she was young. As she was growing up, she developed many personality states to protect herself. Based on Putnam (1997), a survey found that only 3 out of 100 patient who suffered DID who did not report of traumatic childhood.83% patient reported being sexually abused. When linking it back to the movie, Sybil was sexually abused by her mother when she was young and her mother even hang her with a hook and store her in a box.

ii) Genetic inheritance- Her mother was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. Family member with mental disorder might increase the chance of the future generation to suffer from mental disorder (Alloy, Riskin d & Manos, 2005). A family member who suffered from mental disorder might lead to the inheritance of future generation on mental disorder also.

As for the treatment of DID, in the movie the psychiatrist used the hypnosis technique which is useful and realistic to help Sybil. In real life example, hypnosis can be a good choice to help a DID patient.

Review on the movie “Parenthood”


Parenthood (1989)

I personally think that this is a great movie and Steve Martin is one of my favorite actor as well. This story portray all four types of parenting styles well. The four types of parenting styles are (i) Authoritarian (ii) Authoritative (iii) Permissive (iv) Neglect. Among all four types of parenting style, it is said that the authoritative parenting style is the most ideal way of shaping your child. However, I personally agree that using authoritative parenting style is a better way to educate your child. Although I am from a traditional Chinese family but the way my parents used to shape us as a kid is said to be special to my siblings and I. When I was little, my parents used different way of parenting styles to guide us through our childhood. My father tend to use more authoritarian while my mom is a more authoritative person. My dad was strict with us when we were little. Whenever our behavior is inappropriate, he will first warn us to behave ourselves but when we cross his boundaries, we will end up beaten up by his ‘rotan’. After the negative punishment given, he will then explain to us why did he punish us to make us realize what is right and what is wrong. My dad use to set rules for us to follow to train us to be an obedient person. As for my authoritative mom, she is a very supportive mom.She always listen to us when we voice out what we think. When we are doing something wrong she will explain softly to us that we are wrong and try to lead us to the correct path. Yet, she will also spank us if we take her for granted by crossing her boundaries. I love my parents so much as they shape me into a well person. Thank you mom and dad…..

My family photo (1998) in a Christmas Celebration

Movie Review on ” The Fisher King”


The Fisher King (1991)

In this movie, Robbin Williams actually won the Best Actor for this movie. He portrays a schizophrenic person in this movie. His acting was fantastic and he portray as a schizophrenic patient so well.

 

As for the symptoms of Schizophrenia, there is a list of characteristics symptoms. Based on the DSM-IV-TR, the symptoms are: DELUSIONS, HALLUCINATIONS, DISORGANIZED SPEECH, DISORGANIZED or CATATONIC BEHAVIOR and “NEGATIVE SYMPTOMS” as in reduction or loss of normal function like language and goal-directed behavior. A person who shown 2 or more of those symptoms for at least a month and be noticeably for at least 6 months is being diagnosed as Schizophrenia. In the movie, Parry (played by Robbin Williams) had shown a some symptoms of it. Parry had hallucination, catatonic behavior, delusions, and disorganized speech. He had been acting in this way since his wife were murdered 3 years ago. As a result, he can said to be diagnose as Schizophrenia. 

The Knight that is on a quest for the Holy Grail

 

The hallucination image of the Red Knight is symbolize the trauma that Parry experience.

 

Before the movie ended, I actually find something interesting from this movie is the strange friendship between Jack and Parry. I think that friendship is sometimes unexplainable in the way that you can be friend with anyone even he or she is a psychotic person. When Jack first met Parry, he tried to ran away from him because he knew that Parry was a crazy guy. Throughout the movie, Jack guilty made him to feel guilt and try to help Parry out especially when he found out that Parry’s wife was murdered by the “insane radio fan”  which Jack had the responsibility for him. At end of the story, Jack became Parry’s best friend by helping Parry to date his crush and he even help him to complete his quest of the Holy Grail. When I reflect back, I feel glad and fortunate because I have alot of friends that lay out their hands for me when I need help. Although I don’t have a psychological abnormal friend but I really appreciate the friends that I had even they are just “Hi,Bye” friends. When Jack tried to break into the mansion to get the Holy Grail, the scene reminds me of a friend who always help me now when I need help. I believe that every person will have an important friend in their life, I had found mine, have you found yours?

“In the story of our life, friends are like the pages that fill with colors to fill our life with beautiful colors and memory no matter they are being kind or bad to us.”

Review on ” The Sixth Sense” and “The Castle”

 

The Sixth Sense (1999)                      The Castle (1997)

In the review this week I am going to share on how does horror movie can be that scary to many people. In the movie ” The Sixth Sense” it is not an exact horror movie but there are a few scenes that scare me a bit. For example, the scene where the little girl who was poisoned by her step-mother came into Cole’s little sanctuary. Sometimes when a horror movie is unpredictable, it will be very scary because you won’t know what is going to happen next. This reminds me that in one of Dr.Goh’s IO Psychology class, he said that people use to experience the sense if fear when the can see clearly the situation that they are going to experience next. Besides, one of the very successful strategy that scares you in horror movie is their background music and the loudness of the scene when they tried to scare you. There is some scene where they will increase the volume during the particular scene till very loud and most of the time you are being scare by the sound instead of the scene itself. Why does it works? Well from what I had learn in the Biopsychology class, humans are afraid of loud noise since we were born. So that is why in horror movie you will first experience to the loud noise first then only followed by the scary scene.

Next in the movie of “The Castle”, I think that this story actually portray a father that is positive to most of the situation. His unconditioned love shows that he is a great father. In the movie, even his son just dig a hole that seems nothing special but in his father’s eyes, it is something very special. During dinner time, no matter what his wife cooked he will always praise his wife’s cooking. This shows that he is a supportive husband that give full support to his wife in her hobbies. To Daryll ( the father), his daughter was the jewel of him because she graduated with a certificate and she is his pride. His second son Steven likes to invent things. He was also proud of him because Steven can come up with things that is unusual. Last but not least is his eldest son who is at jail, Daryll never give up on him even though he is jail. This movie also show that the bonding of a family is very important to keep each other close. One of the favorite quote that I got from this movie is “a home is not built with bricks and stone but love and memories”.

Review on the movie ” Mississippi Burning”

Mississippi Burning (1988)

 

 

This is a movie about Racism that was going on in the state of Mississippi in America where three young boys were missing on the way the the town of Mississippi. The residence at the town were extreme racist. They treated the black people unfairly but they told the media they are treating them equally. The residence ‘ Discriminate‘ against the black people by burning their house, beat them up and uses some inhuman way to torture the black people. Discrimination is defined as a negative action toward members of specific groups. The movie had portray the seriousness of discrimination at the place. The white people even kill the black people without reason and when they were being charge for burning one of the black people’s home, the judge did not found them guilty for vandalize. It has clearly show that the unfairness between the black people and the white people.

After, this movie I actually recall back that few months ago a racism incident happened in the world of football. Liverpool’s striker Luis Suarez and abuse his words against Manchester United’s defender Patrice Evra. Suarez actually called Evra as nigger which he gives excuse that it was normal back in his country. Racist had actually happened in this incident and the striker was being banned for 8 matches which I think was a right thing punish him. The movie also make me to think back that why should we think that our race is better then another race? Our blood are same in color, we also have a pair of eyes, a nose , a mouth and a pair of ears. The only thing that is different is our skin color but does it really matter? try to imagine that u bought two sweets of a same brand, flavor but the only difference is the paper wrap. Why on earth we will throw away one of the sweets when both are same in neither brand and flavor?

Review on the Movie “Forget Paris”

Forget Paris (1995)

 

 

This is a love story of Mickey and Ellen. The way the meet each other is quite unusual so to speak because while Mickey try to send his father’s body to be buried in Paris the aircraft company lost his father’s body. Ellen found Mickey’s father 2 days later and here the moment where Mickey starts to fall for Ellen. I think that this is very nice movie because like Dr. Goh had mention in class that all love story ends when they started their new life either is a marriage or a new relationship. However, in this movie they actually portray what happened after a marriage and how do the couple trying to cope with it. You can actually see the real problem that people is facing currently.

The second thing that I wanted to share is unconditioned love. In many successful relationship people always said that you will need unconditioned love to be successful. But, do you know that behind every unconditioned love, you will need to sacrifice a lot. Unconditioned love seems to be very common in a relationship but how many couple that really love his or her partner unconditionally? Nowadays, some couples end their relationship because they think that their partner did not give enough unconditioned love to them. In the movie, when Mickey trying to pick up his job as a referee again and he was arguing with Ellen. He thinks that Ellen is not understanding enough. If Mickey ever put himself in the shoe of Ellen, he would appreciate Ellen’s sacrifice for him by quitting her job in Paris and moved all the way to America. Ellen even choose Dallas instead of Paris to hope that Mickey will agree to move with her to a new place due to her job requirement. Sometimes, we should really take a step back and think of what our partner had done for us instead of just keep complaining that our partner had not make enough sacrifices for us.

A quote that I think is very beautiful from this movie by Mickey is: “No place is home without your love ones being with you together”……..

Movie Review on ” The Whale Raider”

The Whale Rider (2002)

 

 

From this movie, I have noticed that what I had learnt in Social Psychology which is the power of ingroup. In the Maori tribe, they actually represented a ingroup that is strong because of the unity of the people. In the scene where whales are being stranded to the shore, the Moari people had tried that best to save the whales. The people give all their efforts to save the whale because they are from the same ingroup and all of them believe that they are responsible to save the whales. If one of them who is not from the ingroup they may give some effort as well but they might not hang on until the end.

Secondly, the theory of cognitive dissonance as Dr.Goh mention at the end of the class also struck into my mind. Sometimes, when you think that doing something that is morally correct but it is against the rules will you choose to still do it or just give it up? In this movie, Pilkea‘s grandfather had actually portray this theory indirectly. In this Maori tribe, their tradition for them to choose a leader has to be a dominant male figure. As a result, Pilkea’s grandfather (Paka) just cannot accept the tradition being broken even though Pilkea had all the qualities to become the leader of the tribe. Personally, I think that following a traditional is good but sometimes you just have some exceptional in some circumstances. In the movie, Pilkea actually showed her qualities of being the new chief but Paka tried to denied because of the tradition of the tribe. If we step back and take a view from the other angle, what is the problem if we break the rules of choosing a women as our leader. We should open our view that as long as the leader is someone with qualities and can lead us forward, why not choosing her as our leader even she is a women.

A quote that I wanted to share after this movie is a quote that I believed many people are familiar with which is ” Rules are meant to be broken“.