THE NIGERIAN HOME VIDEO FILMS: A SOCIOLOGICAL SURVEY
There is a wide concern for the high rate of abnormal behaviour evident in our youth as a result of home video films they are exposed to. This research was undertaken to find out the significance of home video in the life of these youths, with particular reference to Social Science Faculty of the University of Benin. This research is of immense importance because it examines the crucial problem of home video and its influence in the life of its audience. The researcher has demonstrated that home video is highly influential and since youths are easily influenced, whatever message home video carries is definitely copied by youths. On the basis of these findings, certain recommendations were made which would be beneficial to the government and all agencies concerned with home-video and upbringing of youths.
Since the beginning of humanity, man has sought to preserve memories through the creation of artifacts that will transcend our own lifetime and so assume ourselves some form of posterity, perhaps even eternality. Writing had been the major complex medium of preserved reality until the end of 19th century, new forms of external memory appeared, first came photography that brought a total new sense of realism to images, then sound transmission and finally came moving images which gave the mission that life could be recorded brought the era of television, then followed by films.
Films as a form of mass media are means for delivering impersonal communication to a vast audience Macionis (2007). Films have an enormous effect on our attitudes and behaviour. Films are forever modifying our behaviour, altering our attitudes and opinions. It also influences our choice of interpretation and perception of reality. Its persuasive power is capable of taking emotional possession of her audience. When films are tagged the major and most persuasive mass media today, it is the principal leisure activity of most adults and children. Countries have sought to own a film industry and Nigeria is not an exception.
Nigeria has a movie/film industry valued at over three hundred and thirty billion naira, Zik Zulu Okafor (2009). The industry is Africa’s largest movie industry in terms of number of movies produced per year. When home video made its debut in 1992 with “Living in bondage”, its success promised so much. The industry has grown quite popular over the years. Thus, since Nigerian home videos became ubiquitous, its impact on viewers especially youths has been the subject of considerable research.
It is often difficult to encounter someone who haven’t at one point seen a home video. The nature of videos produced are absolutely captivating that her audience are held hostage by its glitz. Nollywood has been an issue of constant debate as regards to its connection to the attitude and behaviour of youth vis-à-vis the content of the movies.
It has a lot of emphasis on interpersonal violence and acquisitive lawlessness, a role both in inciting aggressive behaviours. Youths learn to be aggressive by imitating the actors much as they learn cognitive and social skill by imitation as children. Youths exposed to violence reveals the danger of demonstrating socially undesirable behaviour and criminal techniques. Sexual and romantic films have a profound effect. Sexual passions are aroused and amateur prostitution is aggravated. The proliferation of cheap, dehumanized sex and violence in films are bound over the long run to have a harmful effect not merely in encouraging more violent actions but gradually deadening the sensibilities of those exposed to such films. In addition, there is the fear that adolescents who grow up on a steady diet of the negativity of home videos may be impaired in their moral development