This is topic Has a book/movie/TV show ever changed how you view yourself or reality? in forum Books, Films, Food and Culture at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by Advent 115 (Member # 8914) on :
The show that did this to me most recently (don't laugh to hard) was an old anime show a friend got me hooked on called Neon Genesis Evangelion. After watching the all of the episodes it made me think about what gave me meaning about who I am, how my relationships create my percetion of myself, and how often do I lie to myself about my true motives.

Have any of you experienced something like this from watching a movie, reading a book, of watching TV?
Posted by Juxtapose (Member # 8837) on :
Ever seen Trigun or Cowboy Bebop? Those are two of the best anime (or anything, for that matter, including books) I think I've ever seen. If you can, rent the DVD sets and watch them in order, it's a much stronger experience. One day I'll get around to doing that with NGE.
Posted by Synesthesia (Member # 4774) on :
I like CB and NGE.
And Haibane Renmei which made me cry. Everyone was so kind in that.
Tons of stuff effect me that way-
Wind in the Door
A ton of stuff.
Posted by Celaeno (Member # 8562) on :
When I was younger...
The Giver, Lois Lowry.
The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver.
A Swiftly Tilting Planet, Madeleine L'Engle.

More recently...
The Republic, Plato.
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, David Hume.
The Myth of Sisyphus, Camus
Posted by Jeesh (Member # 9163) on :
Well, (you might laugh)
The Iliad
The Odyessy
The Ender/Shadow series

[ March 05, 2006, 05:26 PM: Message edited by: Jeesh ]
Posted by Dan_raven (Member # 3383) on :
Several of Ayn Rand's books, but mostly so I could argue against them.

Same for The Republic by Aristotle.
Posted by Astaril (Member # 7440) on :
Ritual and Belief: Readings in the Anthropology of Religion (compiled) by David Hicks

City of Bells by Elizabeth Goudge

The Book of Dreams by O.R. Melling

(And Jeesh, it's "Odyssey".)
Posted by Celaeno (Member # 8562) on :
Originally posted by Dan_raven:
Same for The Republic by Aristotle.

Definitely Plato.
Posted by Advent 115 (Member # 8914) on :
Originally posted by Juxtapose:
Ever seen Trigun or Cowboy Bebop? Those are two of the best anime (or anything, for that matter, including books) I think I've ever seen. If you can, rent the DVD sets and watch them in order, it's a much stronger experience. One day I'll get around to doing that with NGE.

Already own all of Trigun (great show, if a little confusing) and watched most of Bebop. That one was just crazy storyline.

Alright, now that some of you have shared what you've seen that changed your perceptions. How did they change your perception of yourself or reality? [Confused]
Posted by Lyrhawn (Member # 7039) on :
I really liked The Giver, I read that when I was a kid too.

But for Anime, Trigun is amazing. I really like Big O too. G Gundam, and especially Gundam Wing were near and dear to my heart as well.
Posted by Advent 115 (Member # 8914) on :
I own, Big O (loved that show) and Gundam Wing (including the movie Endless Waltz).
Posted by Little_Doctor (Member # 6635) on :
Already own all of Trigun (great show, if a little confusing) and watched most of Bebop. That one was just crazy storyline.
Try Fooly Cooly(often abbreviated FLCL). That is one confusing story. My head sizzled for weeks after watching it.

Things that have effected me:

LotR(The Books)
Ruroni Kenshin(The Show)
Many more that I can't think of at the moment.
Posted by Tresopax (Member # 1063) on :
All the movies, books, and TV shows I really love have changed my view of myself and/or reality. I consider that to be one of the defining characteristics of a great work of art. Ender's Game is one that fits this category, possibly more than any other.

Neon Genesis Evangelion is another that would fall into that category. In fact, I think altering your perception of reality is the entire point of Evangelion. That's why it is good, and also why a lot of people might not get it. And it's why I really happen to enjoy the final two episodes, even though there are many who do not.
Posted by Advent 115 (Member # 8914) on :
I liked the ending. Though I think it could have used a better finale maybe it could have had just one more episode.

Tried to understand FLCL way to strange for my tastes. And Ruroni Kenshin? Greatest solm samuri ever. You should see him in Samuri X!
Posted by Lyrhawn (Member # 7039) on :
Cowboy Bebop and Ruroni Kenshin were ones I could just never get into. I suppose I should give them both a second try since I always hear them spoken of in the highest esteem, but something about them rubbed me the wrong way the first time I watched them.
Posted by Infrared (Member # 9196) on :
"Life of Pi" (Yann Martel) is a very interesting book; I'd share how it changed me, but it might ruin your reading...

"Ishmael" (Daniel Quinn) takes a different angle on religion, civilization, and nature.

"Hatchet" (Gary Paulsen) once made me think about how I would cope in the same situation, and more recently wonder how many people in modern America would actually be able to survive if tossed back into a "tool-age" environment.

Anime I love, but I've never really encountered a reality-altering series... the ones mentioned above were all pretty great in their own ways (story, or depth, or animation, or just plain coolness factor)
Posted by blacwolve (Member # 2972) on :
"The Worthing Saga" made me actually think about how I feel about perfection specifically and society in general, in a way no other book really has. It's hard for me not to compare it to "The Giver" which addressed the same topic, but in a way that more told you what to think, then made you think.

"Babylon 5" was the first tv show I became obsessed with, and it came to me during the very impressionable middle school years. In a lot of ways my character was very molded by the characters of Ivanova and Delenn, in a way I don't think it would have been had I watched it later in life.

I just read the Kushiel's Legacy series, and I'm still processing what effect it's had on me. It made a lot of things clear to me that hadn't been before, and I'm not sure how I'm going to react to that clarity yet.

Although I'm not Christian, the Bible has very distinctly shaped my character.

This summer my friends and I watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer. While I don't think the show itself has shaped me, the summer, which would have been immeasurably different without it, has definately shaped me, how I relate to other people, and in some ways my view of reality.
Posted by Celaeno (Member # 8562) on :
Ooh, Infrared, I should've added Quinn. I read him in high school, and I guess I thought he was life-altering then. I don't so much anymore, but I still think he's worth considering.
Posted by Chreese Sroup (Member # 8248) on :
Here are some movies that I would recommend.


Anything by Philip K. Dick (movies or books)
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (Blade Runner)
A Scanner Darkly (Same title to be released soon)
more of a list here: movies books
I'll second The Odyssey / Iliad

And definately read Ender's Game if you haven't yet.

If you are looking for something to do with markets / economics I suggest: The Road to Serfdom
Mathematics / Physics: Chaos

TV shows:
Battlestar Galactica
The Office
Babylon 5

I can sum up any of those for you. If you want any more information or other suggestions, ask away.

Edit: I decided to add this last part because I see that I really didn't answer you're question. Honestly it's really hard to explain how each of these changed My perception without going into an extreme amount of detail per thing listed. I decided to just list things that have helped me understand more about myself and people, and the world around me.
Also, If you haven't ever read the Bible, I would recommend reading all of it, even if you don't believe that any of it is true, there is still a large amount of 'stories' if you want to call them that. These stories have changed people for the better that I know personally, and I mean better as to looking for ways to improve ones self, and ones situation.
Posted by Synesthesia (Member # 4774) on :
Seventh Son
Posted by ElJay (Member # 6358) on :
So, Advent. . . another paper for your psych class?
Posted by Occasional (Member # 5860) on :
Books have changed my perceptions all the time. That is one of the reasons I love to read. There isn't much of anything on television that ever made my perceptions change. At least, none that come to mind enough to say it changed my perception.

Star Trek (the original) might have influenced me as a sci-fi fan. But, Star Wars (the originals) probably solidified my sci-fi interest and love of imagination. Another movie that changed my perception of things was Lawarence of Arabia, with such a mysterious hero. He seemed to represent my inner-perceptions of myself; seeking to do something with life without wanting to become part of its enforced social rythms. What I found was that the real T.E.Lawarance was closer to how I at least want to be than the movie. He was the last Renaissance man who learned and lived everything he could without a singleminded dedication.
Posted by Pelegius (Member # 7868) on :
Occasional, really? Most people, including Lawrence's official biographer, though that the film unkind to Lawrence, showing him commiting attrocities that do not appear to have actualy happened.
Posted by Occasional (Member # 5860) on :
Pelegius, I have no doubt that the film is a distorted view of the man. It is, after all, a Hollywood version even if one of the better movies ever filmed. As I said, learning about the true Lawarance was even more exciting and illuminating. However, despite what the film might have shown him to do beyond historial truth, I feel it did capture his personality.
Posted by Jeesh (Member # 9163) on :
Thanks Astaril.
Posted by SoaPiNuReYe (Member # 9144) on :
The Thin Red Line affected me a lot. I have no idea why.
Posted by Advent 115 (Member # 8914) on :
Originally posted by ElJay:
So, Advent. . . another paper for your psych class?

No. I will never do that again. This was just out of curiousity. Almost every thread I start is based of one principle "boredom". [Wink]
Posted by Jeesh (Member # 9163) on :
LOL, I come up with random topics, write them down and theres my next 50 posts. [ROFL]
Posted by ReikoDemosthenes (Member # 6218) on :
A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeline L'Engle
A Wind in the Door, by Madeline L'Engle
A Swiftly Tilting Planet, by Madeline L'Engle
Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card
The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis
Calvin and Hobbes, by Bill Watterson
The Oz Books, by L. Frank Baum
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
Hamlet, William Shakespeare
King Lear, William Shakespeare
Ode to a Nightengale, John Keats

Dead Poets Society
Laputa: A Castle in the Sky
Princess Mononoke
Hello, Dolly!
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Hamlet, the Kenneth Branagh version

and I know it's not asked for, but it's important in my world anyway, so:

Les Misérables
Kevin Max
Our Lady Peace
Eden's Bridge
Jesus Christ Superstar
Jason Upton
Posted by Soara (Member # 6729) on :
Ender's Game--it taught me to not look at the world in black and white. It made think more about the people who do the bad things in stead of the people who are the victims. It made me realize it's the "bad" people in our world who are the most fascinating.
Life of Pi, it taught me how/why to believe in God. (i'm NOT giving anything away! not really...) It taught me the power of belief and faith.
Firefly--besides simply being amazing, it made me think about how I interact with my family and my friends. It made me hope that someday I can do for someone what Simon did for River (of course not on such big a scale, I imagine). And Mal is an inspiration--I hope that if a difficult thing comes up, I'll be able to be as loyal to my friends as he is. (sorry to those of you who don't understand what i'm talking about, i'm too tired right now to explain it all...)
Posted by Mirrored Shades (Member # 8957) on :
Most of what I've read/watched has changed in some ways, however small. I like books that make me think, and movies and TV shows with more meat to them than Survivor.

On that note, what's changed me lately, or in ways that still make me think -- Of Human Bondage, by W. Somerset Maugham, made me think about what the point to life is, in the end, and supplied most of my favorite quotes. The Dharma Bums, by Kerouac, changed my entire life goals -- briefly, but it happened. The Portrait of Dorian Grey, by Oscar Wilde, made me think about growing old. And Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintence got me fascinated by both philosophy and motorcycles, which has changed me in numerous ways, since.

I know that there have been others, and will be others, but those are the ones that really stand out.

And as for TV shows: I'm seconding the Firefly mention, for much the same reasons. It did make me think about my own brother, and exactly how far I'd go for my family if pushed.
Posted by Tante Shvester (Member # 8202) on :
When I was younger, and I guess, more impressionable, it was hard for me to read a book and NOT get sucked into it, and feel changed by it. And I just seemed to get so passionate about all kinds of different things.

As I got older, and had a firmer sense of who I was and what was important to me, books lost their power to transform me. I can still enjoy them and have empathy for the characters, but I am no longer so easily influenced.

I think part of the influence, at least for me, was trying on different beliefs and values to see what fit. When I found the right fit, I stopped trying different ones.

But it has been a merry journey!
Posted by breyerchic04 (Member # 6423) on :
blacwolve, if this summer shaped your view of reality, i think we're all in for a life changing experience.
Posted by Kristen (Member # 9200) on :
East of Eden by John Steinbeck made me more aware of the possibility of evil intentions behind seemingly good individuals or actions. I may have read it 10 years ago, but some of the realizations I garnered from it seem as clear as if I read it but yesterday.
Posted by CoriSCapnSkip (Member # 9153) on :
Ray Bradbury gave me the will to live, which, so far, I still have.
Posted by AvidReader (Member # 6007) on :
Surely You're Joking, Mr Feynman was a pretty big one for me. Before then, I was leaning more towards a Hermann Hesse vision of smart people living extremely boring and empty lives because no one wanted them around. Feynman got out and did stuff. He's one of the first people I read who said it was ok to not know what you wanted to do with yourself. You can change your mind later. Just pick something you enjoy.

I'm also a big Siddhartha fan. Whenever I'm feeling frustrated with my life, I fall back on its gentle assurance that everything I'm experiencing is leading to peace. It'll all be alright in the end.

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