Socio-Cultural Relevance of Films: An Analysis of Children of Heaven - Movie Review Example

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With its simple storyline, the film was able to take viewers into deeper evaluation concerning the film’s underlying themes, which are the importance of brotherhood and strong family ties.Children of Heaven attempts to please its children audience…
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Socio-Cultural Relevance of Films: An Analysis of Children of Heaven
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Socio-Cultural Relevance of Films: An Analysis of Children of Heaven of School Children of Heaven is an Iranian film by director Majid Majidi. It was released in 1998 for the international audience and was Iran’s official foreign language film entry for the Academy Awards from which it received positive critical acclaim for its socially relevant theme. Although it is evident that films are created to entertain people and earn, films portray different aspects of life, particularly those aspects that are less than pleasant and entertaining, such as poverty. In the entirely, the film fulfils several functions, such as entertainment and socio-cultural purposes as it tackles aspects involving culture, society, and family. This is because the film achieves its purpose in appealing to kids and parents, as well as drive questions and personal opinions on the cultural significance of family ties and brotherhood. One can also infer that the film tackles the idea of social division between the rich and poor. In his book on film history, Chapman (2003) mentions that films have other functions other than entertainment purposes; these include the socio-cultural and informative role of a film when it portrays historical, cultural, economic, and political views and events (p. 15). As films capture events, ideas, and feelings, films may also be considered socio-cultural records that illustrate human life. Relatively, films provide interpretation of past events, comment on political and philosophical views, and even imitate current events without presenting any biased views. This relates to the socio-cultural significance of films wherein they illustrate social events, regardless of whether those are marked with bitterness and indifference. Consequently, the public appeal of films also allows films to shape public opinion, particularly in shaping a person’s personal perspective on the film’s theme. With the illustrative effect of Children of Heaven, one can infer that the film fulfils its role in introducing a way of life that is completely unfamiliar to those who enjoy the luxuries of life while familiar to those who experience the same restrictive effect of poverty. For instance, Children of Heaven portrays a life stricken by poverty although the director makes sure that the film does not become overly melodramatic. Specifically, the film illustrates the difference between a poor and a rich household, particularly in the opportunities that rich kids have and the extent of hardship that poor kids must undergo to get what they want. However, although it is evident that the film attempts to illustrate the contrasting life of the rich and poor, the film does so in subtle ways without putting the rich at dark light while siding with the poor in their lowly condition. In this case, one can infer that the film only intends to appeal both parents and kids and engage them in discussions about the topic. With its simple storyline, the film was able to take viewers into deeper evaluation concerning the film’s underlying themes, which are the importance of brotherhood and strong family ties. As children’s films, Children of Heaven attempts to please its children audience and introduce the value of brotherhood. Relatively, in the cultural context, the film also serves as a starting point for discussions on family relations, particularly in strengthening the bond between siblings. This evident in how the two main characters in film deal with their problem, and how the family deals with poverty, in general. For instance, the parents still monitor their kids although not as much as to provide them with whatever they need. Aside from this, the gardening scene of the film introduces two cultural traditions on father-son bonding. For instance, the rich father and son maintains their traditional, authority-related gap while the poor father and son illustrates the camaraderie that fathers and sons may share even in difficult times. Relatively, this two contrasting images of father-son bonding drives opinions about the relationship between fathers and sons across cultures. Conclusively, Children of Heaven may be considered a didactical tale of brotherhood as it presents an image of innocence and persistence, through the two main characters, even amidst adversities. In analyzing the finer aspects of the film, it is evident that it illustrates the cultural value of brotherhood even in different cultures, and even amidst financial difficulties. Relatively, this also illustrates the value of films as a medium for cultural expression and social commentary wherein films are used to illustrate aspects of human life that may awaken social and cultural concern. In its introduction of such aspects, one can infer that films, such as the Children of Heaven, perform its social role of promoting values, particularly in helping children develop strong foundations of camaraderie with their siblings. Reference Chapman, J. (2003). Cinemas of the world: Film and society from 1895 to the present. London, UK: Reaktion Books. Read More
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