Egypt in Hollywood
A blog about the pros and cons of antiquity films

The Spark of an Idea

While Hollywood may have its downfalls, it also has a few high points. Very few elementary schools or high schools promote the study of ancient Egyptian culture or any other ancient culture for that matter. Hollywood produces movies that offer a mystical and action packed view of ancient civilizations, but at least it’s a view. When younger generations see movies like The Mummy, Cleopatra, and Stargate, their minds begin to think and see things in a way they may have never thought of before. New concepts and ideas can find their way into young minds and prosper into new generations. Children can be exposed to these cultures and come to new realizations about the world such as: there are other ways of life different from what we know; there are other gods and religions that are worshiped; there is a whole world out there to see and discover for yourself, with different languages, cultures, religions, etc. This kind of positive reinforcement can lead to another realization: “That is a place I would like to see for myself.” With new found realizations, maybe these young minds will travel and get first-hand experience which may lead to the next great discovery in history or anthropology.

“Films in themselves are a special kind of experience…They leave less to the imagination than a book on the visual and aural planes, but they leave more to the imagination in so far as the feelings and personalities of the persons portrayed are concerned. Special kinds of imagination ‘filers’ have been developed for the films. Just as the novel-reader has to accustom himself to imagining the scene described almost as a picture, so the cinema-viewer has to build the separate shots into a whole three-dimensional world” (Jarvie 127).

Movies have the advantage of visual confirmation. Theories can be displayed on screen, making them interesting and easy to see. This can allow everyone, not just scholars, to have an opinion.

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