Negative effects of movies on children

Negative effects of movies on children

Negative Movie Effects You Should Guard Your Child Against

Monkey see, monkey do. This saying has no better place of finding expression than in the curious nature of all kids. At, we believe that movies have a lasting impression on children the same way they do have on adults. The only difference is that kids are more vulnerable to the content they watch since they lack the filters necessary for discriminating between right and wrong. In this post, we shall examine some of the negative effects violent movies have on kids. As parents, this should concern you since if you don’t tame what you child watches, you will watch helplessly when they begin practicing it. Remain with us to discover more.

Imitation of Violence

Initially, we said that kids are very good at imitating adults. In fact, if you want a child to do anything you don’t need to tell them; you just need to do it in their viewing and they will imitate. It is easy for them to question and rebel against your instructions but they are too helpless to resist what they see.

As children grow, they adopt an instinct called observational learning where they start replicating what they watch in real life. For instance, it is easier for them to follow what they see Hulk Hogan or the Rock do on WWF than it is to follow its meaningless caution “don’t try this at home.” Contrary to the warning, kids are more zealous to do what they saw while forgetting all they heard. In most movies, all the negative and violent behavior is usually celebrated and rewarded, meaning, the kids will replicate it hoping to reap the same “benefits” in the real world.

Increased Violent Behavior

The second impact these movies have on the 21st century kids is the increase of violent behavior among kids. For instance, the US has experienced the highest cases of school shootings coming from young boys. Where did these kids watch shootings? Not at home or school, but in the movies they interact with. In an experiment conducted in the US, nursery kids were separated into two groups with one watching violent cartoons while others neutral ones. After some time, the ones who were exposed to violent movies showed violent behavior by breaking toys, fighting, and playing roughly. Those who watched mild ones showed the opposite by playing peacefully and cooperatively.

An Exaggerated Feeling of Insecurity

Additionally, when kids get exposed to violent movies, they develop a false sense of insecurity in the real world. The reason is that their mind is conditioned to think that the violence they watched in the movies is also in the real world. It is no wonder some of them start screaming in their dreams. Also, they develop the fear of walking out at night alone since they feel the same people they watched in the movies could attack them in the real world.

A Seared Conscious

Lastly, watching violent movies sears kids’ conscience. The reason is that when they watch murder or rape being rewarded, they assume these acts are heroic and they don’t see anything wrong with them in the real world.

Does this ring a bell? If it does, it is high time you took charge and controlled what your child watches.


I found the above article very interesting in terms of the impact of observed violence on children. Rsearch supports the above information – watching violence can encourage violent behaviour in children.

Mandy X