psychology movie project Marina Melendez

The breakfast club


  • Bender goes through Brian's lunch box and finds soup in a thermos container, apple juice, and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with no crust. Based on Brian's type of lunch and personality he reenacts what conversation between Brian and his parents must be: perfect and artificial. He assumes that Brian must live a pretty good life since he has a nutritional lunch and he's your typical skinny, nerdy kid.
  • The psychological principle of stereotypes deals with negative or positive assumptions that people or characters like Bender make about a person that they base off of some truth and fact or none.
  • This scene relates to stereotypes since Bender puts Brian into a mental made category that he perceives nerds to be. He expects them to dress a certain way, be in academic clubs like the physics club, have super orderly lunches, and live happy lives, but because of his stereotypes, Bender judges Brian on the outside without considering his heart, his character, or his struggles. Especially Brian's struggle with striving for perfection with his grades so that he can please his parents.


  • Numerous times in the movie one character will do something such as cough, smoke, or whistle which prompts the rest of the characters to do the same, in order to not stand out and so that they can fit i with everyone else. For example, when Bender starts whistling a marching tune and the rest of the teens join in.
  • The psychological principle of conformity deals with people choosing out of their own will to yield to social norms even if it goes against their inclination.
  • This scene relates to conformity because although the other teens wouldn't normally talk out of line to the detention supervisor or smoke, Bender's negative influence causes people like Claire and Brian to reshape their beliefs of what they would or wouldn't do to match and conform to Bender's behavior.

Sociocultural Level of Analysis

This movie deals with the sociocultural level of analysis since the culture that the teenagers are around affects their behavior. For example, when Bender started smoking and Brian and Claire decided to join him. This isn't an activity that Brian or Claire would do on a regular basis in their everyday lives but because they saw someone else their age doing it, it sparked a curiosity in themselves which triggered them to want to try out smoking. Similarly, when Claire decides to do Allison's makeup she doesn't hesitate because the way that many girls choose to dress up and present themselves in those days enticed her and influenced how she wanted to appear so that she could gain the approval and satisfaction from others which would satisfy her need and feeling to belong and feel important.

12 angry men

frustration aggression theory

  • Juror 3 bases his decision to rule the young boy as guilty due to his relationship with his son. He did everything in his power to raise his son into a strong, young man; however, his son ended up getting angry at him, hitting him, and running away. Because of Juror 3's bitter experience with his son, he has a prejudice view towards teenage sons which is why he claims that the young boy is guilty, although he didn't take time to analyze the situation or the evidence.
  • The psychological principle of frustration aggression theory occurs when a person, such as Juror 3, has prejudice and anger towards a certain group of people or person, such as his son. Since Juror 3 was never able to express his anger towards his son or get his revenge, this causes Juror 3 to show resentment towards anyone in a similar position or anyone inferior to him, such as the Puerto Rican suspect, who is not only a different race but also resembles the Jurors son in a way.
  • This scene relates to the frustration aggression theory since Juror 3 takes out his anger that his son manifested onto the young boy being accused since he didn't have a tangible target to express his anger towards.For this reason, he expelled his anger onto the young boy on trial because the boy on trial reminds him off his son and the conflict that ended their relationship.

primary effect

  • Juror 8 presented numerous contradictions concerning the evidence about the young gentleman on trial and whether or not he was truly responsible for the murder. For example, he proved that the knife that the accused boy isn't a very unique knife. In fact, it's a common knife that anyone could purchase form a nearby store. Although, the other jurors heard convincing and credible arguments they still continue to consider the young man as guilty, because they choose to rely on the information that they primarily heard rather than the information that was presented to them afterwards.
  • The psychological principle of primary effect deals with people leaning on or supporting information that they heard primarily, rather than being persuaded by information that is based on a person's interpretation of events.
  • This scene relates to the primary effect because Jurors 4, 7, and 10 continued to sit down in opposition to the young man on trial because they refused to consider the contradictions that the other Jurors had presented. They limited their views on what they considered correct to the evidence that the judge and the two witnesses had told them. They were hesitant to listen to any of the other Jurors ideas or beliefs because they felt that their allegations were based on whatever they assumed could have happened, but none of the Jurors really know what happened or if they're assumptions or the evidence provided is accurate.

Sociocultural Level of Analysis

This movie revolves around the sociocultural level of analysis because where and how the jurors grew up influenced how they behaved and treated others. If one juror grew up in a family where differing opinions were welcomed and explored, this allowed the juror to open up and explore the different reasons why the young man could have not been guilty without harboring anger or just assuming that he must be guilty because of the hard cold facts. On the other hand, if another juror grew up in a family where there was no explanation or no use in looking for evidence but rather basing their judgement on what they knew and whether they felt it was right or wrong then that would cause him to have a very biased view depending on what he considers right or wrong. Because every juror grew up differently, every jurors community impacted them and their decisions in a certain way.

to kill a mockingbird

authoritarian personality

  • All of the farmers drive to the town prison to hopefully harass and kill Tom Robinson before his trial; however, upon their arrival they see Atticus persistently sitting by the door. The farmers were planning on attacking Atticus and Tom Robinson because Tom is black and was accused of a crime that defied the norms of society and Atticus was genuinely defending an African American which angered and contradicted how people treated African Americans during that time.
  • The psychological principle of authoritarian personality is a type of prejudice. Traditional people, such as the farmers, show predetermined judgement on those who they feel like violate the society and its norms. Although a person, such as Tom Robinson, might not be guilty, they continue to show hatred because their biased belief is that all African Americans are evil.
  • This scene relates to authoritarian personality because before the farmers even hear Tom Robinson's side of the story concerning Mayella, they plot and attempt to kill him based on the prejudice that they have towards African Americans. They conclude that Tom raped Mayella because of the deep rooted bias that they grew up being taught. Additionally, Atticus has never done anything personally wrong to offend the farmers; however, they tried to kill him because he choose to defend Tom Robinson. The farmers believe that Atticus shouldn't help an African American even if the case is against one of the most dubious families in the town. Since Atticus rejects this traditional policy that all people have upheld, the farmers choose to manifest their anger and hatred on Atticus.

cognitive dissonance

  • While Mayella is on trial Atticus would ask her numerous questions where she would answer one way the first time, but then contradict herself when she revealed her final answer. For example, when Atticus asks Mayella about her relationship with her father at first she claims, "he's tolerable except..." which could imply that there comes a point where he's not tolerable and possibly mistreats Mayella. When Atticus tries to fill in the details of Mayella's unanswered question he states that when her father is drunk that he possibly becomes unbearable and beats her. After hesitating to answer the question, she answers that her father has never touched a hair on her head. Mayella knows that if she continued her original thought then people would suspect that her father might have done the crime which leads her to falter before answering the question.
  • The psychological principle of cognitive dissonance is when people show inconsistent thoughts in their story and evidence, which Mayella does numerous times throughout the trial. She'll state something then refute it then dismiss it altogether. The cause of this inconsistency is due to the fact that Mayella knows that Tom Robinson is innocent; however, she's trying to protect her father's reputation, while supporting a lie that Atticus continually proves is fake.
  • This scene relates to cognitive dissonance since Mayella provides her thoughts on what happened but constantly contradicts herself in the middle of her lies. Since Mayella is discomforted and intimidated by the judge, Atticus, her father, and the townspeople watching she wants to make sure that all that she says is in balance and all correlates which leads her to continually change her answers to responses. Because of Mayella's desire to be respected and believed it causes her to speak before she thinks and blurt out the first thing that comes to her mind.

Sociocultural Level of Analysis

This movie correlates with the sociocultural level of analysis since many characters base their actions and beliefs on the community and the communities sets of beliefs as a whole. Whether these beliefs were accurate or not, it did not stop others in the community from continuing to show prejudice. For example, people in the community who knew nothing but a one sided story about the Tom Robinson case still considered him guilty because of the prejudice that they developed from others in the Maycomb community. The community taught them to look down on African Americans because they are inferior to you which is what they do and how they treat most African Americans.

analyze this

cognitive misers

  • When Paul Vitti begins to feel pain in his chest he gets Jelly to take him to the hospital because he's convinced that he's having heart issues and that he has had numerous heart attacks in the past week. When he gets the results back from the doctor he assures him that Paul isn't suffering from anything serious like heart attacks, but rather panic attacks. Although, the doctor has medical experience, Paul refuses to believe that he had a panic attack which leads him to go to another doctor (the psychiatrist) who gives Paul the same diagnosis that the medical doctor gave him.
  • The psychological principle of cognitive misers is when people find different ways to save time and take shortcuts when considering how to make a decision on their beliefs toward and idea. Rather than basing their decisions and opinions on factual evidence they choose to rely on stereotypes, religious beliefs, or how the media portrays society which is much quicker than taking time to really ponder about a question or a decision.
  • This scene relates to cognitive misers since Paul Vitti takes a mental shortcut when the doctor suggests that he could possibly be having panic attacks. Rather than looking back at his life and what could be a stressor causing this panic and anxiety, Paul chooses to overrule the idea of him suffering from panic attacks because he is a well-known gangster and gangsters don't panic or get panic attacks. Additionally, he came up with the mental shortcut that having panic attacks gives you a sense of weakness. This statement has no evidence to back it up but Paul bases his thinking on stereotypes placed on gangsters without realizing that he truly was having anxiety attacks.


  • Prior to this scene, Ben Sobel, the psychologist is coerced by Jelly into covering for Paul Vitti as his consigliere, since Paul was having a panic attack and couldn't attend one of the most important meetings between all the gangsters of the East Coast. Ben has no experience at all with being a gangster and must conform to the role based on how he has seen Paul act and based on how he sees the other gangsters around him act.
  • The psychological principle of conformity is when people yield to the expectations of those around them, like when Ben begins to talk and have the same mannerisms as the gangsters around him. People may not act like a certain group but feel that it is their need to conform so that they can gain acceptance from a group of people. People may also conform due to pressures placed on them, that they are coerced into following.
  • This scene relates to conformity since Ben is pressured into conforming to the behavior and mannerisms of the gangsters. He must portray himself as one of the gangsters so that they will take him seriously, respect him, and accept him as one of their own although he isn't. Ben publicly conforms to the gangsters by mocking the way they talk, the way they dress, the way that they associate with others, the way they treat others inferior to them, and their language of talking. He withholds his preferences on how he would act in order to blend in with the rest of the gangsters surrounded by him.

Biological and Sociocultural Levels of Analysis

This movie connects with both biological and sociocultural levels of analysis since Paul Vitti's physical health, past experiences, and the environment that he grew up around affected his biological and mental health. The movie relates to the biological level of analysis since Paul's medical issue of having panic attacks has to do with patterns of behavior that could have been inherited from his father who was in the same stressful setting as Paul with being a gangster and trying to protect himself from the cops while trying to protect himself from his enemies which can cause a lot of stress emotionally, especially as people get older. The sociocultural level of analysis relates to this movie since Paul's culture influences his behavior. He grew up in a gang affiliated family that helped influence his decision to want to become a gangster. Also, how his family and community acted probably helped shape how he acts today with using nothing but profanity, and the idea that it's okay to have a mistress.

good will hunting

Foot in the door effect

  • In this scene, Will Hunting is solving a math problem that most math majors at MIT couldn't even solve. When Professor Gerald who posted the question finds Will solving the problem he does everything that he can to to expose Will to more math so that his talents can be discovered and so that he can reap the success for finding Will. He exposes Will to counseling, intense math classes, and job interviews assuming that these changes in Will's life will change him.
  • The psychological principle of the foot in the door effect is a way to manipulate people into conforming. It gets a person to comply and do a large request by first getting them to agree to do a small manageable task that won't be as tedious as the next task. This effect will either work and allow someone to manipulate others to do whatever they want or it will backfire.
  • During this scene, math professor Gerald fails to employ the foot in the door effect. He forces Will to take intense math classes, and start talking to a counselor, but the professor fails to understand that if the individual doesn't agree with the first set of request then it will be difficult to get him to complete any tasks at all. Which is why he continues to fail to get Will to comply to any of his requests like, applying for interviews because Will never consented or took the first requests seriously.


  • In this moment, Skylar realizes how much she loves Will so she asks him to move to California with her. This is a huge commitment and Will wonders how Skylar really knows that she wants to spend the rest of her life with Will and what would happen if she got tired of him. Will starts to get mad at Skylar because he feels that she doesn't want to know about the imperfections in his life when that's all she wants to know. He ends up saying that he doesn't love her and ends up leaving her.
  • The psychological principle of schema is when a person has a certain belief or expectation on how an event will turn out based on experiences from the past. This one experience dictates how a person will process and base any other event, person or relationship that they encounter.
  • This scene relates to schema since Will has a set belief on how all relationships will turn out based on his prior relationships with other girls and his foster families. They all claimed that they loved him but eventually got tired of him and abused him mentally and physically. Will's schema about relationships causes him to break it off with Skylar although she genuinely loved and cared for him, because he thinks that every girl will end up leaving him and hurting him like other girls from the past and like his numerous foster parents have done. For this reason, Will chooses to cut Skylar off before she can do any damage to his heart and emotions.

Sociocultural Level of Analysis

This movie most correlates with the Sociocultural level of analysis since the principles of that level of analysis state that culture influences behavior and that people's views of the world are resistant to change and developed by the community and culture, and both of these principles are evident in the movie. Because, Will grew up in a tough, low-income town, where not many people had top notch jobs. The type of community that Will lived in caused him to believe that he would end up living the same life as many people from his neighborhood, despite his intelligence in math, because that was the reality for many others in his neighborhood. Additionally, Will grew up in a neighborhood where fighting was the only way to fend for yourself which explains why he results to violence whenever a conflict arises.


Created with images by Ian D - "dvds movies collection"

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