Study Shows Meaningful Movies Help Us Deal With Life's Difficulties

Add Hotel Rwanda, The Shawshank Redemption, and Up to your watchlist.

A new study shows that meaningful movies help us in more ways than we think. Researchers from The Ohio State University have found that the more moving and poignant a film is, the more we are able to cope with life's difficulties.

"Meaningful movies actually help people cope with difficulties in their own lives, and help them want to pursue more significant goals," said Jared Ott, the study's lead author. In fact, such movies can help us deal with challenges thrown our way, as well as motivating us to be better people as a whole.

Participants were given a list of 20 Hollywood films with one more meaningful and the other less meaningful. A survey was then given with a set of questions asking how the movies connected with each individual.

The study was done to find out how people experience certain movies in their everyday lives. Michael Slate, a co-author of the study and professor of communication at The Ohio State University, said there wasn't a lot of research on the topic.

So, what movies should be on your watchlist? The Shawshank Redemption, Up, and Hotel Rwanda are just some. But, the study's authors also gave examples of movies that won't exactly leave you with positive experiences (but they're still good cinema, at least): The Big Lebowski and Catch Me if You Can.

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About The Author
Paolo Chua
Associate Style Editor
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor at Esquire Philippines, where he writes about fashion and grooming. Before joining Esquire Philippines, he was a writer at Town & Country Philippines.
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