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Films Representing Society

Logic_on_rails
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3/30/2013 6:00:48 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Many films are memorable, exciting, and entertaining. A subset of these films are interesting in that they capture the essence of society's thought during a decade or time. For obvious reasons, these films are normally made around the time that they depict.

For instance, Saturday Night Fever encapsulates the culture of the late 70s... especially the disco scene. Wall Street captures elements of the 80s in the USA, and the drive in corporate areas.

There are probably many more movies of this kind around. Do you know any of them? That's what this thread is about. Accurate portrayals of society that are engaging. They don't have to be perfect adaptations, but relatively accurate would be good.

Of course, many films in other areas of film may capture the essence of some small part of society - film is replete with famous movies, and for good reason - but it's a focus on these films on society that I'm interested in. Make no mistake though, I do have interests in other areas of film!

So, what movies represent society to you?
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DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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3/30/2013 6:42:12 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Hmm...VERY difficult question. I'll have to post back in here about that. I had a gut reaction to bring up Do the Right Thing, directed by Spike Lee, however.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

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DetectableNinja
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3/30/2013 6:48:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
However, if you asked about general literature or stage plays/musicals that capture society, I could rattle 'em off, I tells ya!
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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3/30/2013 7:47:20 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Films are extremely important to society. They are a good representation of our collective sub-conscious.

Take, for example, the emmy's. Whether or not the movie that wins best picture is a sad or happy movie is a highly accurate indicator of whether the incumbent president will win reelection.
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Cody_Franklin
Posts: 9,484
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3/30/2013 7:58:43 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 3/30/2013 7:47:20 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Films are extremely important to society. They are a good representation of our collective sub-conscious.

Take, for example, the emmy's. Whether or not the movie that wins best picture is a sad or happy movie is a highly accurate indicator of whether the incumbent president will win reelection.

There was a long period during which stock market indices were a close fit to skirt lengths--shorter skirts indicated improvements, and longer skirts indicated the converse. To say that two variables are statistically significantly correlated (which question, in the context of the relation between Best Picture and presidential elections) is not to say that one variable is a "highly accurate indicator" of the value of the other.
FREEDO
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3/30/2013 7:59:41 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 3/30/2013 7:58:43 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/30/2013 7:47:20 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Films are extremely important to society. They are a good representation of our collective sub-conscious.

Take, for example, the emmy's. Whether or not the movie that wins best picture is a sad or happy movie is a highly accurate indicator of whether the incumbent president will win reelection.

There was a long period during which stock market indices were a close fit to skirt lengths--shorter skirts indicated improvements, and longer skirts indicated the converse. To say that two variables are statistically significantly correlated (which question, in the context of the relation between Best Picture and presidential elections) is not to say that one variable is a "highly accurate indicator" of the value of the other.

I'm more aware of that than most.

However, this actually makes sense.
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Cody_Franklin
Posts: 9,484
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3/30/2013 8:09:01 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 3/30/2013 7:59:41 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 3/30/2013 7:58:43 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/30/2013 7:47:20 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Films are extremely important to society. They are a good representation of our collective sub-conscious.

Take, for example, the emmy's. Whether or not the movie that wins best picture is a sad or happy movie is a highly accurate indicator of whether the incumbent president will win reelection.

There was a long period during which stock market indices were a close fit to skirt lengths--shorter skirts indicated improvements, and longer skirts indicated the converse. To say that two variables are statistically significantly correlated (which question, in the context of the relation between Best Picture and presidential elections) is not to say that one variable is a "highly accurate indicator" of the value of the other.

I'm more aware of that than most.

However, this actually makes sense.

Well, it makes sense in the same way theories about state rationality make sense--they're valid (in the strict sense) according to certain specified parameters, but they're only deductive exercises--they're not really empirically verifiable. Attempts at quantification usually devolve into questions either of statistical significance (which is neither informative nor particularly useful) or of the values to be arbitrarily assigned to certain variables to permit calculation. In this case, it only makes sense because of the vague subtextual invocation of national mood (which is ostensibly the connector between candidate and movie preferences).
Cody_Franklin
Posts: 9,484
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3/30/2013 8:11:52 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Plus, the skirt length theory does make sense, since the theory was produced with the explicit intention of fitting observational data--skirt length was supposed, according some weird set of assumptions about human behavior, that short skirts were a reflection of high or increasing consumer confidence which is in turn responsible for bull markets.
YYW
Posts: 36,417
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4/7/2013 9:45:09 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 3/30/2013 6:00:48 PM, Logic_on_rails wrote:
So, what movies represent society to you?

Some of these represent society. Some are just freaking awesome. Here are a few of my top pics:

1960s- The Graduate, Dr. Strangelove, The Manchurian Candidate, The Sound of Music (though I wouldn't really call this a social commentary), Goldfinger, Judgement at Nuremberg, The Dirty Dozen, From Russia With Love,

1970s- Apocalypse Now, Network, The Rocky Series, Animal House, Manhattan, Saturday Night Fever (props to you, Logic), The Candidate, and of course... The Godfather pt. I, II

1980s- Platoon, Once Upon a Time in America, A Christmas Story (though it's grotesquely overplayed), Batman, Dead Poet's Society, Scarface

1990s- Goodfellas, Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, Titanic, Braveheart, Good Will Hunting, The Last of the Mohicans, The Matrix

2000s- Watchmen, Lord of the Rings, The Departed, The Dark Night, A Beautiful Mind, Munich, Harry Potter movies (all of them), Walk the Line, Atonement, Requiem for a Dream

2010s- Inception, Skyfall, Shutter Island
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