Influence of Films on Society


Dadasaheb Phalke brought films in our lives with an intention to impart moral values to the Indian society with touch of entertainment. Though, later films became a major money churning device-profession and overall an industry in itself. However, since the beginning of its journey films have not only just been mere a form of entertainment but also one of the greatest elements that played pivotal role in making society, what it is today. The good and Bad too!

Relationship between art and culture may seem very different; however its presence has always been felt in majorly all aspects of life, be it – paintings, music or films, especially in India. Since, the inception of Indian film industry, the films have always been concentrating on various subjects that have been the important aspects of our lifestyle. These subjects highlighted issues, complexities and the various aspects of the Indian society that created ripples in the past.

It began with Raja Harishchandra, the film that was based on the legend of King Harishchandra, recounted in the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. The film revolves around the noble and righteous king, Harishchandra to honor his promise to the sage Vishwamitra.

Indian social films have always rocked Indians and most of the social movies are big hits. Many Bollywood films reflect deeper insights into the complex processes of modernization, colonialism, nationalism, freedom for women, the rights of the minorities and also the relationships between Hindus & Muslims. Films such as Achut Kanya, released in 1930 and Sujata (of high caste), produced in 1959 were based on casteism. Other social films that reflected Indian cultural values and social aspects were Prem Rog, Mandi, Astitva, Godmother, Lagaan, Traffic Signal, Bombay, Veer Zaara, Pinjar, Ishaqzaade, to name a few.

Many film makers of Bollywood have always dedicated their films to India and its freedom fighters. Films such as Purab Paschim, Shaheed, Kranti, Border, LOC – Kargil, Rang De Basanti, Swades, The Legend of Bhagat Singh, Hey Ram and many arouse patriotic spirit, love and pride for the nation, while many film makers have made inspiring films on sports such as Chak De India and Iqbaal.  Films such as Udaan, Tere Sang and Taare Zameen Par reflect some good things to the society.

All these above mentioned films no doubt gave a good experience of films to audiences. Because they were meant for so. The fact is that entertainment and cinema are synonymous with each other and films have a great reflection power. Films today are so interlinked with our lives today that it is difficult to imagine life without it. Films act as a reference point to understand customs, behaviour patterns, values, arts and crafts and also the practices of everyday life.

It is not possible to underestimate the influence of cinema. Moreover, the influence of cinema is irreparable. As our films have always tried to appeal and greatly influence our society, they indeed deserve special attention. It is a human tendency and mentality to adapt things which are attractive. Hence, it is a great responsibility of films makers to ensure that the film made should have moral values that are conveyed with a lasting effect on the audience.

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