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June 2019

Movies and their messages: Spielberg's Jaws and Tarkovsky's "Mirror." Special Issue: Human action and personality: Essays in honour of Martii Takala

Journal/Book: Jyvaskyla Studies in Education, Psychology and Social Research. 1984; 54:

Abstract: Discusses psychological aspects and messages in the films Jaws and The Mirror. Jaws is a penetrating study of the conflict between the humane, democratic values that people profess and the motive of economic gain that tends to be a more potent determinant of their actions. An important element in both Jaws and The Mirror is the music, which features an insistent rhythmic sound that builds to nearly unbearable tension. A scene in The Mirror portrays a multisensory experience that captures on the screen a preverbal level of development that rarely returns in adulthood except in fever, nightmares, or between sleep and wakefulness. A psychoanalytic interpretation of both films suggests that the fear of the ocean depths in Jaws symbolizes the anxiety-arousing aspects of mother-infant symbiosis, while the vanishing circular blob in The Mirror symbolizes the breast evaporating into nothingness and the subsequent threat of annihilation through abandonment, isolation, and emptiness. (20 ref)

Note: messages & psychoanalytic aspects of films "Jaws" and "Mirror"

Keyword(s): Motion pictures entertainment; psychoanalytic interpretation; messages


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