Blockbusters Glorify Drugs, Irresponsible Sex

From the January 2006 Trumpet Print Edition

There is no lack of sexual activity portrayed in movies, mostly between unmarried people. Not surprisingly, however, hardly a single film depicts its characters having to live with the real and negative consequences of their illicit sexual encounters.

A recent study conducted by the Institute for Child Health Research at Children’s Hospital in Westmead, Australia, surveyed 200 top movies of all time based on box office profits. Of those, it eliminated movies that were animated, released before the emergence of aids (they chose 1983), and rated g or pg. Out of the 87 remaining films, 53 contained sex episodes. In those sex scenes, only one made a reference to any form of birth control.

Though 98 percent of the sexual escapades could have resulted in pregnancy, not one movie showed any consequence of unprotected sex: noun wanted pregnancies, no contractions of hivor any other sexually transmitted disease.

The study also focused on how drugs were depicted in those movies. While illicit drugs were shown in fewer movies than had depicted sex, researchers found drugs were often shown in a positive light.

A clear example was found in movies that show marijuana use: 52 percent of these movies portrayed marijuana use in a positive light, while 48 percent showed it in a neutral light. As with unprotected sex, no negative consequences were ever shown.

Movies ignore reality by failing to show cause and effect. By consistently and frequently portraying unprotected sex and drug use in a positive light, movies promote these harmful practices in the minds of viewers.

There are negative consequences for the wrong use of sex. There are negative consequences for any use of illicit drugs.

But at the same time, there are numerous benefits to living the way God intended us to. More joy and happiness than can ever be portrayed on a movie screen awaits those who live that way of life.