The Instigator
soumya_a_thomas
Pro (for)
Winning
3 Points
The Contender
Oromagi
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The aim of cinema is to entertain and not to educate

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
soumya_a_thomas
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/20/2014 Category: Movies
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 12,973 times Debate No: 59219
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (1)

 

soumya_a_thomas

Pro

The primary aim of cinema is to entertain the masses.
Cinema is one of the major source of entertainment in this global village. Long back cinema served the purpose of educating but in these days it is only just meant for entertainment and it does not teach moral values to the people.Today, people do not like taking advice and films based on giving advice and moral to audience fails miserably.So the sole aim of the makers of cinema is to gain a profit from these films.

Most of the people in the modern world are educated.After a hard day's (or week's) work people need some sort of entertainment and not boring 'moral stories'.
Today cinema has become the most popular and the cheapest means of entertainment. It provides great relaxation for the hard working laborers who have no other way of entertainment. For a few hours they escape into a different world altogether and forget their woes and worries.Most cartoons, soap operas, or violent crime television shows are to entertain and simulate.

Why do films based on unreal and imaginative things for which there has been no record over the years becomes super hits and mints money??
And why do films about superheros (with super powers) defeating atrocious villains after long unending struggles become record breakers in the box office in spite of the idea being repeated continuously?
BECAUSE CINEMAS ARE MEANT FOR ENTERTAINMENT! :)
Oromagi

Con

I'll accept that debate and thank Pro for the opportunity to discuss.

The primary aim of cinema is to entertain the masses.

There's some truth to this, but it must be said the body of art known as film is not biological and exhibits no aims or goal-seeking behavior of its own accord. Certainly, the primary aim of the typical movie-goer is probably entertainment, when entertainment is defined as an activity that holds an audience's attention or interest. The primary aim of most filmmakers, cinemas, televsion stations and other media distributing film is probably financial sucess in thier field of employment. A movie critic's primary aim is to evaluate whether a work of film is entertaining and study why some movies work and others don't. The primary aim, therefore, changes depending on perspective.

Most of the people in the modern world are educated.

That's a big statement that doesn't mean much. Educated to what degree? Pro seems to be saying that most people are sufficiently educated to no longer warrant continued education but I doubt any wise or successful person would concede that there's such a thing as too much education or that every exeperience in life is not an educational opportunity of some kind.

After a hard day's (or week's) work people need some sort of entertainment and not boring 'moral stories'. Long back cinema served the purpose of educating but in these days it is only just meant for entertainment and it does not teach moral values to the people.

Films are cultural artifacts, they not only reflect and document culture, they affect culture to a profound degree. Generally, all art may be said to emerge from the religious impulse- the caves of Lascaux, the theatre of Dionysus, the musical instruments at Holhe Fels. Therefore, I question any outlook that attests some confident division between entertainment and moral instruction. To some degree, I think most popular entertainment is educational and making moral comment. To some degree, I think most religious ceremony is entertainment and spectacle. Any hard lines drawn between theatre and church are more about personal preference and perception and have little to do with any established cultural segregation.

Today, people do not like taking advice and films based on giving advice and moral to audience fails miserably.So the sole aim of the makers of cinema is to gain a profit from these films.

I just saw "Frozen" for the first time, so let's use that movie as one example. "Frozen" makes any number of moral teachings, particually in the line of feminist advice for young women and particualrly in contrast against earlier Disney princess movies.

1) Women can have power without being wicked
2) Princesses may also inherit the throne, not merely hope to marry a prince. And when women have power, there will be men who merely hope to marry such a princess.
3) Being different should not make you less lovable.
4) Don't just fall for the first handsome prince who woos: that is seldom love. Wait for a man willing to make sacrifices on your behalf and is willing to respect your freedom: there you will find love that lasts.
5) Being honest and open about your nature saves a lot of problems down the road.
6) A romantic relationship does not need to be the only or most important relationship to a woman (True love's embrace)
7) A good man is patient and asks before making advances.

I'm sure there are many more, but these are certainly enough to demonstrate that a movie can at one and the same time be a very dogmatic morality play and a delightful, popular, and profitable entertainment for all ages. Why does Pro assume any such film must fail? How does Pro explain the success of "Frozen?"


Today cinema has become the most popular and the cheapest means of entertainment.

I can think of some activities that are both way more popular and way less expensive.

....um, yeah. That and Scrabble.

It provides great relaxation for the hard working laborers who have no other way of entertainment. For a few hours they escape into a different world altogether and forget their woes and worries. Most cartoons, soap operas, or violent crime television shows are to entertain and simulate.

Honestly, I don't think any of these entertainments work for very long unless they are morality plays. Does a roadrunner cartoon have anything to say except that "pride goeth before the fall?" I don't think so. Crime TV is probably the genre that is most like the Medieval morality plays: generic archtypes, obvious good and evil characters, good always wins, bad always loses, simple populist morals for general approbation by the masses.

And why do films about superheros (with super powers) defeating atrocious villains after long unending struggles become record breakers in the box office in spite of the idea being repeated continuously?

Again, what could contain a more obvious moral education than a story about "Super Heroes." How are they any different from the mythologies of other cultures? other times? They are in no way differet, of course.

One fairly obvious example is the Christ tale told in the second act of Spiderman 2, the legendary train scene. A man wishes to set aside his destiny and live out an ordinary life, but discovers his supernatural powers extend from his willingness to sacrifice himself for humanity's sake and he is compelled by the spirit of his father (Uncle Ben) to give himself over for the salvation of all. When he commits himself so completely that he collapses unconcious, perhaps dead (literally making the sign of the cross, the scourging of the body in case anybody was missing the analogy) the ordinary people catch him mid-fall,recognizing his sacrifice on their behalf. They take him from his cross and lift him hand over hand into the heart of the train and when they see is an ordinary man like themselves he is resurrected before them as they promise to preserve the secret of his power.

In truth, few films hit the religious metaphors quite as hard as the superhero movies, but few moviegoers seem to complain or even notice. When the educational or moral aspects of entertainment are done best, they are seemlessly blended with the rest of the spectacle. But that doesn't mean they're not there.

Perhaps Pro complaint is only that some entertainments do a less than adequate job of blending education and extravaganza or perhaps Pro simply sometimes disagrees with a film's conclusions and resents the propaganda.

Whatever Pro's complaint, education can be no more separated from cinema than can metaphor from poetry or epiphany from music. The component is so integral any cultural artifact that it persists even in the absense of any artistic intention.





Debate Round No. 1
soumya_a_thomas

Pro

Firstly I would like to thank Con for accepting the challenge. But Con has not made the points clear and seems to be beating around the bush.

"The primary aim, therefore, changes depending on perspective."
I do think every film has a goal. Although films attempt to top box office,the main aim of films is to be approved by a vast variety of people. The entertainment provided by films should stay in the minds of those watching it.

Most of the people in the modern world are educated. I think Con has misunderstood my argument.
People nowadays do not like taking advice and films based on giving advice and moral to audience fails miserably.
By watching films how can you get educated to a degree? If people wanted to be educated about a particular subject they can find many sources for it other than cinemas. Cinemas are meant for a vast crowd and therefore cannot be meant for education. They can give ideas to the people and inspire them. But "The primary aim of cinema is to entertain the masses."

There was no need for Con to drag religion into this topic. It is a completely different subject and people have different views about religion. Films are not to be meant to provide moral instruction. Sermons are meant for that.


"To some degree, I think most popular entertainment is educational and making moral comment."
"I don't think any of these entertainments work for very long unless they are morality plays"
It depends on the way you see it, that is on your perspective. You have a lot of sources to attain moral values. So it depends on your choice alone.

I just can't believe Con got these many morals form Frozen. This clearly shows that it was the choice of Con to derive morals from that film because Con really loved it. Be practical. Fairy tales are imaginative.

"Why does Pro assume any such film must fail? How does Pro explain the success of "Frozen?"
Frozen had a huge success not because of the morals Con have mentioned. Frozen is not based on something real. I believe it is highly imaginative and very different from usual fairy tales. Also the songs in Frozen were mesmerizing. They're witty, catchy and utterly predictable.
I think Con has made a mistake here.
FROZEN REALLY PROVIDED ENTERTAINMENT TO THE MASS.

"I can think of some activities that are both way more popular and way less expensive.
....um, yeah. That and Scrabble."
You can't compare 'playing' to watching films. Films take us to an enchanting and mesmerizing world. It provides recreation and gives a change. People tend to forget their worries and chores for a while.People flock to see cinemas only to get some entertainment and joy for a while.

"Super Heroes." How are they any different from the mythologies of other cultures? other times? They are in no way differet, of course."
They are different of course. These films are highly imaginative. They are in not similar to anything. Many people are crazy about films based on superheroes because it gives them what they wants.(entertainment!)

Spider man is a tale that has been around for quite a while. Still people are not bored because it is a huge source of entertainment. The actions in spider man are quite appealing ,interesting and entertaining.

I guess I have made my views clear.

The first purpose of the cinema is entertainment. Action and adventure films dominate the box office, as do romantic comedies and similar movies. Less serious movies tend to thrive because they're meant to entertain audiences. At one point, I think cinema used to broadcast most educational things. But cinema has become so popular and the main reason has been for entertainment purposes. People spends so much money to be entertained and one of the main media outlets has been cinema.
Oromagi

Con

Firstly I would like to thank Con for accepting the challenge.

Sure thing and thanks agains for the topic.

But Con has not made the points clear and seems to be beating around the bush.


That's entirely possible, for I am a famous mumbler.

So let's just state as succintly as possible: Pro has claimed that the aim of cinema is to entertain, but not to educate. My job is to show that's not true. Therefore I have argued that entertainment is not and should not be the sole mission of moviemaking and that the nature of art is such that films are educational whether we try to make them so or not, whether we recognize the lesson or not.


I do think every film has a goal.

People have goals, films don't. Since there are many different people working on most films made for major release, we have to expect that those different people agree to participate for a variety of reasons.

Although films attempt to top box office,the main aim of films is to be approved by a vast variety of people.

Not every film is made for mass approval. Most pornography is only made for men and within that genre there are some incredibly peculiar genres that could only appeal to a very small market. How, for example, does "Two Girls, One Cup" accord with Pro's statement? (If you havent' seen it, I'd advise against trying. It's one of those horrible things you can't unsee. Rather, read the Wikipedia page to get a sense of its revolting content. [1]) It's only a YouTube video so nobody's making money and the movie seems to have been made exclusively to garner the disapproval and disgust from as many people as possible.

How do crush films fit into this generalization?


People nowadays do not like taking advice and films based on giving advice and moral to audience fails miserably. By watching films how can you get educated to a degree? If people wanted to be educated about a particular subject they can find many sources for it other than cinemas.

Here, we must strongly disagree. One of my favorite things about cinema is seeing someplace new, learning something I've never learned before.

Take "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington," for example. There's an incredible amount of information there about American politics: how a bill becomes a law; how the rules of order are applied; how a fillibuster works and why its used; how conflicting financial interests create corrupt politicians; etc


If one wishes to understand the charasmatic appeal of Adolph Hitler or how a small party of extremists could lead an nation into an act of collective suicide, then Riefenstahl's "Trumph of the Will" is an absolute must. We can and should read books on the subject, study newspapers of that era, but to truly understand how 700,000 people can stand in one place listening to one obvious, crazy lie after another and respond with little other than pride and joy, "Triumph of the Will," a cinematic experience, is the only effective educational resource.

What about "March of the Penguins?" A French documentary about flightless birds struggling to survive in a dim, featureless landscape should not theoretically have much box offce appeal, but it did. This strictly educational film was the second biggest box office draw the week of its release and one of the ten most profitable movies of 2005.

Cinemas are meant for a vast crowd and therefore cannot be meant for education.

In fact, vast crowds love to be educated.

When viewers tuned in to the World Cup this summer or the Olympics last winter, did the audience expect broadcasters to just shut up and let folks watch the game? No, quite the opposite: every possible moment of every match was filled with facts and figures, background information, and tactical analysis.


Let's ask ourselves how film fanatics demonstrate their love a given cultural artifact, say Star Wars as an example.

Yes, people watch the film over and over. Yes people dress in costumes and speak in Jawa to one another but the single most important mark of a Star Wars geek is all about education. Geeks watch the Star War movies over and over again to extract the most minute parcels of information about a galaxy that doesn't exist and then construct false reference materials: maps, encyclopedias, archetectural blueprints, language dictionaries, online libraries ad infinitum.

When faced with a popular cultural artifact of fantasy that is clearly not trying too hard to actually educate anybody about anything, the most notable popular response is that we create fictional educational materials and develop a whole new body of cultural study- the compete opposite of wishing that there was nothing new to learn.

There was no need for Con to drag religion into this topic. It is a completely different subject and people have different views about religion. Films are not to be meant to provide moral instruction. Sermons are meant for that.

I could not disagree more. In fact, film and religion are entirely inseperable. Consider this- there are 3 major civic events where people are expected to to gather in rows with everybody facing the same direction, sit quietly with a minimum of movement and conversation, and afterward convene for community discussion and dissemination: school, church, and theater. The reason we behave the same way in these three contexts is because these three are all simply blends of the same human communal impulse. Humans love to share information but different kinds of information are set aside for different contexts. Some information is best heard only from your parents or from a lover. Some information is best heard only from an entirely authoritarian voice: "Tornado Warning in your area: seek shelter now," etc.

Some information: public information about history and culture, about social and moral community standards, about communal need and communal achievement is communicated in the church/school/theater context. We sit still for an hour or two and recieve information by example, by demonstration, by parable, by laughter and catharsis.


I just can't believe Con got these many morals form Frozen. Be practical. Fairy tales are imaginative. I think Con has made a mistake here.

Well, me and the world then, because it seems like every media outlet has discussed the morals or "Frozen" at one time or another. Here's one TV station's website reporting "5 Moral Lessons from Frozen:"

http://www.ksl.com...

Here's a report about a minister denouncing Frozen's morals as gay propaganda:

http://www.independent.co.uk...

You can't compare 'playing' to watching films.

It's a bit off topic, but if you don't find sex or Scrabble cheap and entertaining diversions from one's worries and responsibilites, then I think you are doing it wrong.

"Super Heroes" They are in not similar to anything.

In fact, hero's tales as religious archetypes has been a popular field of study since before movies were being made. The famous Swiss psychologist Carl Jung frequently wrote of the heroic archetypes common to every culture. Joseph Campbell went even further in his "Hero with a Thousand Faces" by identifying 18 heroic archetypes that could be found in any hero's tale: Jesus, Mohammed, King Arthur, Bilbo Baggins, Buddha, or Luke Skywalker. As soon as humans start talking about heroes, we start discussing the human ideal and the human condition. As soon any story about a superhero begins, we humans cannot help but be in school, in church and in theater all simultaneously and regardless of context. The phenomenon is easily documented and observed because that is simply way the human brain and our human communities have developed: we transmit certain types of information by telling stories.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 2
soumya_a_thomas

Pro

I would like to inform Con that in this debate you have to prove that 'cinema educates'.

"People have goals, films don't"
That's not true. There are many films with a particular goal. For example: some films may be against drug abuse,some might aim to top the box office......and so on.
The purpose of film should to make you feel something. Be it happy and laughing or sad and emotionally scarred. If you feel entertained the film worked and if you feel amazed at the artistry of film then it worked.
When we enter a cinema hall with a tired and heavy heart,our only objective is entertainment. The aim of the filmmaker should be to fulfill our objectives.

the main aim of films is to be approved by a vast variety of people....that's true except in 'rare' cases.

"One of my favorite things about cinema is seeing someplace new, learning something I've never learned before. "
Everything shown in cinemas might not be true. It varies according to the ideas and imaginations of the film makers.
So cinemas can't be used to learn something new. They are highly imaginative. You can have many ways other than cinemas to learn something new.

"When viewers tuned in to the World Cup this summer or the Olympics last winter, did the audience expect broadcasters to just shut up and let folks watch the game?"
That's not about cinema. In fact sports events ENTERTAIN us.

" Geeks watch the Star War movies over and over again to extract the most minute parcels of information about a galaxy"
It is better they do some research about it if they want to be 'educated' about it.

Frozen has nothing related to real life. Again, it provided real entertainment.
The morals you have mentioned in Round 1....Some of them has no relevance in the modern world(for instance about princes and princesses) They are imaginative and are for ENTERTAINMENT. And some of them are 'accepted truths'.
It doesn't provide much of education.

".....then I think you are doing it wrong."
I don't think so,whatever you may say.
Film should reaffirm the need to live while confronting one with the terrible consequences of living. Film can also simply provide the necessary escape from the tedious and horrible aspects of life.

".... hero's tales as religious archetypes has been a popular field of study ........."
Again religion. You have to say about "The aim of cinema is to educate".Please stick on to the topic.

Entertainment is a defining feature of contemporary culture.
Mainstream cinema is famous for painting a superficial image of things. In films, life is oversimplified. The many hurdles are all solved in mere three hours and a "happy ending" is imposed. Movies are, after all, for entertainment. Love stories rule cinema. Even a patriotic movie tends to have some love. Movies generally terminate with the marriage but in reality, it is after marriage that the real test begins. The deal is not to build a love relationship but to maintain it. Problems arise when the two love birds actually get to live 24*7. But Movies never talk about this. They don"t even consider the differences- inter-caste and inter-religious marriage issues are hardly ever taken up. The issue is generally the difference in status. Love stories also glorify run-away brides and teenagers running away for some "adventure". The society which watches ever step that we take is completely ignored. In movies, life, in general, is shown to be waiting for that one opportunity. Take one right step and everything becomes smooth. The complexities and struggles in life is never shown. Why? Because people want to leave the hall with a smiling face. "It only happens in films", "How filmy"...This is how people understand the movie culture interesting.

The most important factor which determines the quality of a movie is how much it can entertain its viewers. Sometimes, they even don"t care whether the story is logical or not as long as the movie satisfies their expectation of what entertainment is.

In my opinion, the most important factor that contribute to good movies are entertainment. Movies should be entertaining. By watching such movies, not only can I have a great time. In addition, I can be sure that the time and the money I spend watching movies are well spent because such movies are really worth watching and will enlighten me.

In this busy world filled with hectic activities, it is up to a human being to take some time way for relaxation. Relaxation helps to quell away the tiredness and rejuvenate our spirits. One way of relaxation is watching movies. The ubiquitous movie theaters in each city can witness the fact that watching movies is the main form of entertainment for people.Well I feel most people have a proclivity towards an entertaining movie may it be on an action, love or a comedy, rather than a serious one.
Think of a person who has been working the entire day. When he returns home, he will be completely exhausted and will start feeling that he leads a very hectic life. At that situation, if he watches a movie that is full of lively pranks and jokes, he will be revitalized like a battery that is being recharged. This is what everyone wants, especially when they are dejected and doomed.
On the other hand, when a person watches a movie that is very serious and emotional, it will only increase his tiredness. He will be having a lot of thoughts in his mind, like, what to do next? What is my first job when I go to work tomorrow? What are my assessments tomorrow? What is my account balance? Among all these numerous things, when he watches a movie that contains serious dialects, he will start thinking about those things. This is not not the thing that should have come to his mind.

People"s inclination towards entertaining movies can be strengthened by analyzing the factors behind why people watch movies. Most people visit cinema halls only for relaxation and naturally tend to choose a light subject. It is most common for youngsters to use cinema halls as meeting places and they make watching a movie a part of their weekend holiday plan. That is the reason why all the box office hit movies fall in the entertainment category, whether thrill or action. Moreover, children are always fascinated by entertaining and fun cartoon movies. Children play the deciding factor in pulling their busy parents to the cinema halls.

Movies are to amuse and entertain the audience rather than fomenting their emotions and causing them to think.
The main reason of success of an entertaining movie is the wide range of audience who can accept the movie and enjoy it. Hence making an entertaining movie imposes a lesser risk on the capital invested in the making of a movie. So film producers hesitate to spend more on a serious subject with the trepidation over the chances of the movie not making a good performance.

There are many other avenues to address serious problems, such as books, campaigns, and advertisements etc. However I feel that watching movies is the best way to enjoy action and entertainment. It helps to bring out the exact feelings as conceived by the director. Some of our favorite films tend to linger in our memories for ever and just a little thought about the film unleash the entire sequence of actions in the films drawing us back into its virtual world.

The movies that are filled with amusement and entertainment will be appreciated by most of the people of all categories. After all, movies are virtual world were impractical can be put into practicality and ideology.
Hence there is no doubt that given a choice. I would prefer to watch entertaining movie rather than a serious one.
Oromagi

Con



I would like to inform Con that in this debate you have to prove that 'cinema educates'.

I know.... Remember Frozen? Spiderchrist? March of the Penguins?

There are many films with a particular goal. For example: some films may be against drug abuse

And how is a film against drug abuse not educational? Are we supposed to laugh ourselves into temperance? No, we learn about drug abuse. Take a film like "Trainspotting" for example. We understand the appeal of drugs to the protagonist and the escape drugs provide from the grey squalor of Edinburgh but also learn the toll those drugs take: first on his wallet, then on health, and then on his friends. The haunted sober survivor who emerges at the end of that movie makes a far more effective education then some stern documentary citing drugs statistics.

But to answer the question, yes, film are designed with a particular goals. Those goals do not belong to the strip of celluloid or the code that stores those strings of image. Those goals belong to the director, producer, actors, writers, set designers, gaffers, etc. Yes, money is usually in there but there's usually a lot of other stuff.

The purpose of film should to make you feel something.

I'll agree. You seem to be suggesting that we can't feel and learn at the same time. I think the only really lasting learning comes when you respond emotionally to the content.

the main aim of films is to be approved by a vast variety of people....that's true except in 'rare' cases.

Cynical, but true often enough. It seems to me that even as the "populist only" change puts increasing limitations on big budget films out of Hollywood and Bollywood, the methods and venues for filmmakers with little or no interest in mass approval has increased exponentially. Kickstarter, Indiegogo, etc are total gamechangers for small market fundraising while just about anything turns into a movie theater these days: glasses, watches, table-tops. I was driving through an abandoned factory district in my city this week and came across 50 people gathered in a dirt lot, projecting movies on to old brick walls.

Such dynamics are increasingly breaking down potential audiences into smaller and smaller groups. I have a friend who only makes short, cheap films about white-water rafting and skiing but manages to make a living by showing them to audiences of the interested.

Everything shown in cinemas might not be true. It varies according to the ideas and imaginations of the film makers.
So cinemas can't be used to learn something new. They are highly imaginative. You can have many ways other than cinemas to learn something new.

So you're saying Star Trek can't teach because it lives only in our imaginations? Dr. Martin Luther King would certainly disagree with you. When Nichelle Nichols portrayed Lt. Uhuru on TOS she planned to leave after the first season until MLK insisted that she was important for teaching Black Americans to dream bigger than the lower caste roles the White majority imposed. Sesame Street is entirely imaginary and was designed primarily to teach. Are you saying there's nothing educational about Sesame Street movies?

That's not about cinema.

Since we can watch movies on your wristwatch or go to the local movie theater to watch US vs. Germany, I won't pretend to know what media is cinema and what media is not anymore.

It is better they do some research about it if they want to be 'educated' about it.

But that's just the point. When fans love a movie for which there are few if any real educational materials, they invent and distribute their own fake research. That tells us that viewers will force movies to be educational, even if there was little intent at the outset.

Frozen has nothing related to real life. Again, it provided real entertainment. Some of them has no relevance in the modern world(for instance about princes and princesses)

Princes and Princesses, Ice and Magic, Snow Men and Trolls- they are all metaphors for our real world. One has only to open one's mind a little to see how the Trolls are a non-traditional but loving family, how magic represents strong emotions like love and jealousy.


Again religion. You have to say about "The aim of cinema is to educate".Please stick on to the topic.

I have already made it clear that I think the lines between art and education and religion are too blurry to define. Unless Pro wishes to claim that there is nothing cultural or educational about religion then I am right on topic.

Pro's conclusion begins to suggest that Pro is not much failing to recognize that every movie has some educational quality than that she wishes that she wishes those qualities would be removed.

Pro's statement that "Love stories rule cinema" makes me think that when she thinks of cinema, she thinks of Bollywood. Hollywood and Hong Kong are not so dominated by romance. The French make lots of love stories but they are so interested in inter-caste, inter-racial, inter-religious couplings that it is clear Pro is not thinking of those.

I would argue that even in a Bollywood Romantic Musical (I'll admit that I have only seen a handful) there is more education going on than Pro is willing to acknowledge. Pro complains that love stories tend to show the getting together of couples rather than the realistic (and dull) staying together of couples. I'm not sure that Pro has considered the extent to which romances are symbolic and metaphorical. Most romances employ couples as symbols of ideas or concepts that must be synthesized.

Let's take Pretty Woman because I expect most readers will have seen it. Yes Pretty Woman is a silly movie about pretty people that one would be tempted to argue has no educational content, BUT...

Consider that the writers consciously modeled the story on the Ancient Roman Ovidian story of Pygmalion, updated by Shakespeare in A Winter's Tale, updated by G. B. Shaw in stage play Pygmalion which was made into the musical and film My Fair Lady. In the original Ovid, a sculptor loses all interest in women after meeting some local prostitutes. In Aphrodite's temple (there's that pesky religion again) he prays for a woman as ideal as the ivory statue he is sculpting. That night, he kisses the statue on the lips and she comes to life in his arms.

Pretty Woman, however, is as much about the creation as the creator. Like most romantic comedies, the main couple is likable but missing some important characteristic: Vivian is hardworking, principled, and good-at-heart but she has no culture. Edward is hardworking, principled, and cultured, but he lacks compassion. In the first half of the movie Vivian must synthesize increased levels of sophistication until finally, at the opera, she is a whole woman. Edward must synthesize increased levels of compassion until finally he sacrifices business for love, making him a whole man. Transformed into relatively complete participants in society, they may now join in marriage and ceremonially take their place in a family in community. Think that's overdoing it? Better read Aristotle's Poetics because comedies have been working off that basic plot line for at least 2500 years. Just about every comedy that ends in marriage is a lesson in harmony, finding balance within oneself, then finding balance with another, then finding balance in community. Romance.

Do we really suppose that Schindler's List was not also an education regarding the Holocaust? Do we really suppose The Searchers was not also an education regarding the corrupting quality of racism? Do we really suppose 2001: A Space Odyssey was not also an education regarding contemporary spaceship design and a meditation on the dangers of artificial intelligence?

Movies are educational whether or not the lesson was intended or comprehended. Movies are educational in spite of Pro's wishing they were not or pretending they don't.

My thanks again to Pro for the topic.

Please vote CON!



Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by soumya_a_thomas 3 years ago
soumya_a_thomas
This is my first debate!!!!
Posted by soumya_a_thomas 3 years ago
soumya_a_thomas
PLEASE vote...........:(
Posted by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
If possible please redo this to fix that huge formatting error in the final round... The mods tend to be cool about deleting tied debates when it's for such reasons.
Posted by soumya_a_thomas 3 years ago
soumya_a_thomas
This is my first debate.
I kinda spent a lot of time on it.....
Hope my arguments were good.

PLEASE VOTE FOR PRO :)
Posted by prefdave 3 years ago
prefdave
Note to oromagi... thanks for the info. Your opponent and I are debate partners in an upcoming competition.:)
Posted by prefdave 3 years ago
prefdave
Hee Hee... soumya, if you want to practise for debate, make sure you accept my old age home challenge before somebody else does.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by leonitus2464 3 years ago
leonitus2464
soumya_a_thomasOromagiTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: con didnt refute the fact that the primary source of cinema is to entertain.