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Pages:
2 pages/≈550 words
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5 Sources
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APA
Subject:
Psychology
Type:
Movie Review
Language:
English (U.S.)
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Topic:

How Different Psychological Theories Can Be Related To The Characters In The Film (Movie Review Sample)

Instructions:

AN ANALYSIS OF THE FILM, 'WHEN KIDS GET LIFE' AND HOW DIFFERENT PSYCHOLOGICAL THEORIES CAN BE RELATED TO THE CHARACTERS IN THE FILM.

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Film Analysis – When Kids Get Life
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Film Analysis – When Kids Get Life
Deviance is a behavior, which goes against social norms, and it is enough to cause disapproval from majority of society. It can be criminal or non-criminal. There are different theories related to deviance. The film, ‘When Kids Get Life,’ looks at different cases of kids who committed murder crimes and have been sentenced to life imprisonment. Through the interviews carried out on the convicts and their families, various elements of deviance are displayed. These are discussed by looking at different theories of deviance.
Labeling Theory
This theory explains that the identity and behavior of a person depends on how others label them. It shows us how labeling or treating someone as a criminal can actually lead them to adopt deviant behavior (Liberman, Kirk & Kim, 2014).
In the film, labeling theory is displayed by the case of Andrew Medina who was only 15 when he was convicted of murder. Andrew had been labeled a certain way due to his learning disability and no one really took concern of him as his father was an alchoholic and his mother was too stressed out. Due to this, Andrew joined a gang so that he would feel accepted (Bikel, 2007). A murder occurred and it was not obvious who committed the actual crime but due to Andrew’s weakness the other gang members negotiated, their release and all accused Andrew of committing the crime.
Hirshi’s Control Theory
Travis Hirschi developed the social control theory in 1969. The theory explains that people break the law because of a breakdown with their societal bond. (Vazsonyi & Huang, 2015). The breakdown of any of these leads to one engaging in criminal activities.
In the film, this theory is displayed through Jacob Ind who murdered his stepfather and mother. Jacob lacked a normal family bond as his stepfather was sexually abusing him and his brother. They lived in a horrible environment and the mother did nothing to protect them. Jacob’s brother moved out when he turned 18 and Jacob was left alone to endure the pain he was getting from his stepfather (Bikel, 2007). This led him to commit the crime, as there was no one to assist im. His brother had tried getting help from social services in vain.
Differential Association Theory
The differential association theory was developed by Edwin Sutherland and seeks to explain that when one commits a crime, it is influenced on their association with others (Dobrow, 2016). Any person can become a criminal.
In the film, this theory can be associated with Trevor Jones who was convicted for the murder of Mathew. Trevor started displaying signs of deviant behavior at a young age when he begun skipping school and doing drugs and alcohol. He was involved with groups of criminals. Mathew was looking to purchase a gun from Trevor. Trevor had already planned to get money from Mathew without giving him the gun hence showing that criminal behavior is etched in him (Bikel, 2007). The gun went off and shot Mathew, who passed away and Mathew’s family believes that this was all a plan due to the nature of Trevor’s criminal behaviors.
Merton’s Anomie and Strain Theory
This theory was founded by Robert Merton and it argues that society encourages too much of deviant behavior. Societal norms and goals force individuals to work within specific structures and if they fail to, they become defiant (Deflem, 2017).
In the film, this theory can be shown through the case of Nathan Ybanez who is also serving life, due to murder. Nathan wants to do the things that normal kids do hence he joins a band founded by Erik Jenson. Nathan however finds a cha...
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