Isobel Archer

A film, music and arts buff writing about all things film, music and arts.

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    Latest Topics

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    Why are we drawn to tragedy in film?

    Tragedy in cinema is a large genre (Forrest Gump, Marriage Story, Steel Magnolias, etc.) but why are we drawn to movies that make us cry? Is there a similarity to listening to sad music? Maybe a big, cathartic cry is just what’s needed to make it through a tough week. But does tragedy in cinema help us to express our emotions or make us feel worse?

    Discuss how tragedy relates to the ideas of romanticism, and why these themes are still prevalent in today’s blockbusters.

    • Traditionally, the intention of tragedy has always been to cause catharsis (pleasure through pain) to the audience. But it has been discussed that many other genres or artistic forms can also produce or invoke catharsis. In the end, it is all a matter of personal or cultural preference. If it is true that some people are attracted to tragic stories, it is also true that many people actively avoid any form of tearjerker, too. – T. Palomino 1 year ago
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    • I think this could be examined through a lens of either upward or downward comparison: does seeing depictions of suffering more significant than ours elevate ourselves and make us feel better about our own relatively insignificant problems, or does viewing suffering as adjacent to our own validate our emotions and allow us justification to be upset? – lavenderhatchet 1 year ago
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    • Psychologically, negative events affect our brains more than positive ones. Tragic events have the potency to describes the higher amount of psychological arousal that a person experiences and is exposed to a negative or traumatic event compared with a positive event – Kammil 1 year ago
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    • Tragedy and comedy are two sides of the same coin- large, visceral emotions that often evoke a physical response in us; the same can be said of romanticism, though in a more subtle state. I think it would be interesting to compare the historical trends of popularity of tragedy in popular media and correlate that with what was happening in wider society at the time. – lbarling 10 months ago
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    Latest Comments

    I’ve always seen the Death Eaters as an allegory for the Nazi party. A lot of interesting points here!

    Harry Potter and the War on Terror

    I’ve never thought about Snape in that way before, but it makes sense! Very good read.

    Autism in Media: Progressing, Yet Stuck

    It would be mayhem – major governments and organisations fighting for control over them.

    Why Don't Superheroes Change the World?