Conformity to acceptable societal norms is an intricate characteristic of human behavior. By conforming, people surrender their will and work towards maintaining a status quo. Various factors affect the acceptability of a film/movie. These include age of the audience, gender, race, length of the movie, etc. The purpose of this study was aimed at proving the hypotheses that a) Subject: films depicting Romance and or violence are acceptable across the gender divide by both male and female audiences b) Gender: The differences in preferences between genders, such as females were more likely to conform to generally accepted opinions (reflected in a movie review) or social pressure than males, and c) Conformity: positive movie reviews/higher ratings would encourage/influence individuals to watch a movie over one that had bad reviews and ratings. The study employed a literature review of research on entertainment preference based on conformity, through scientific publications within the last five years, alongside surveys conducted on conformity and entertainment viewership. The research revealed that 55% of females were inclined to review negatively, movies that highlighted violence without romance in their setting. Therefore the hypothesis-indicating subject: romance and violence is supported while 20% did not like films that highlight male dominance over females. 80% disliked films that highlighted gender stereotypes, particularly those ridiculing women in society, which supports the second hypothesis on gender based film preferences and biases. On the other hand, 95 % of males were likely to review violent movies with or without any romance positively. However, 98% of them do not like romantic films.100% of individuals from both gender divides would watch a movie based on its rating. Higher ratings guaranteed larger viewership, which corroborates our third hypothesis Literature review also revealed that movies whose plots are built around gender and racial ridicule and stereotypes in society are likely to be reviewed positively by male audiences. The study also employed surveys with 120 willing participants (60 males and 61 females). The results obtained proved our hypotheses right: 30% would watch a movie with higher ratings; 37% of the women when compared to 23% of the men. The research findings revealed that preferences between males and females are distinct and indeed, gender plays a key role in the acceptability of works of art in society. The research indicates that movie acceptability and review is not done objectively. Overrated movies could therefore reach larger audiences compared to genuinely good movies without high ratings or reviews. The gender debacle is a parameter for prejudice especially in the acceptability of films. For objectivity in the review of films, a wide array should be produced so as to satisfy these two groups wholesomely.
Keywords: psychology, gender, movie genre, stereotype, stereotype accuracy
Kimitaka, T., Kazutaka, S., & Tsutomu, E. (2007). Movie Review Classification Based on a Multiple Classifier. Kyushu Institute of Technology, Iizuka, Department of Artificial Intelligence, Fukuoka.