Films that have influenced society?

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My assignment is to use examples to show one aspect of society that films have influenced for a Media class. Actually writing the paper won't be difficult, but I'm having trouble finding examples of movies that have influenced rather than just reflected society.

Am I missing anything obvious? Once I get some examples I'll probably decide which aspect of society I'd like to focus on.

Thanks GAF.


I am Wayne Brady.
I guess Rebel without a Cause goes without sayin' eh?

lol I was watching the movie planet B-Boy the other day and at the end, one of the breakdancers from the Japanese squad had a rockabilly like haircut and when some girl was laughing at it he blurts out "jamesa deena" (
) and it hit me like DYAM..that movie's influence never fucking stops. It just keeps going from culture to culture leaving and coming back over and over and over again. Is there really any other movie that can claim that?

The best could see it in his breakdancing. The guy was mad emo the whole damn flick, but when it counted you could see how it affected his dancing.
Nazi propaganda film were quite influential on German society.
Obvious examples are The Triumph of Will, The Eternal Jew and The Jew Suss.
For a more lighthearted and recent approach, Sideways pretty much killed Merlot in the US.
movies have been influencing society the same way as literature, by giving rise to awareness and discussion on issues ignored or foreign to the viewers.

alot of foreign films that are made with an international audience in mind, such as raise the red lantern or bus 178, would be a great place to start.

and for a specific example, birth of a nation re-energized the then dying ku klux klan.


I have a foreskin yet I do not have AIDS
star wars/trek.

in a BAD WAY.

Titanic turned the world into a bunch of screaming teenage girls for a while as well.
Judgment at Nuremberg forced its audiences to question morality and the will of those subordinated by governmental decree.

Apocalypse Now forced a society to question its conquest-like intentions in Vietnam and also presented a graphic depiction of guerrilla warfare.

It's a Wonderful Life has become a staple of the Christmas season, yet is for a large part overwhelmingly depressing. Despite clearing the Great Depression, the film still holds great relevance to modern society, or else it wouldn't be shown year after year. Explain what this relevance is and how it has "transcended" periods, thus implying a sense of effect rather than reflection.
American Graffiti set off a decade-long love affair with nostalgia for the 1950's. Happy Days, revival of 50's rock-and-roll, and to some degree, even Punk music were kicked off in the wave that followed.
The Nightmare Before Christmas spawned a sub-generation of douchebags. I think you should write your paper on this annoying social phenomena. That and the kids who just wait to become morally outraged so they can whip out their V for Vendetta masks.


I whinny my fervor lowly, for his length is not as great as those of the Hylian war stallions
I'm surprised nobody has mentioned Bambi.

There was a measurable decrease in hunting after the release of the movie.


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Minority Report.

Tech-geeks the world over are trying their damndest to recreate that interface for the mainstream.

I love watching tech the simulates that behavior.
I don't remember which movie started it, but the emergence of documentaries as viable theater money makers. I'd thi nk it was a Michael Moore film, but I dunno which one.
Has it really taken this long to bring up the Godfather movies?

It's not like people don't go a day without using "I'll make him an offer you won't refuse", or "keep your friends close, but your enemies closer".

You can't tell me that a lot of guys out there are influenced by that movie in the way they do business or treat their family.
I'm sure it's not the first to experience it, but what about Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

It was part of the horror genre that went from being rated PG to "Oh my god what about the children BAN IT!"
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