Film and Family

Ep. 27 - The Necessities or Not of Nudity (Part 2)

January 15, 2021 Kent & Anna Thalman
Film and Family
Ep. 27 - The Necessities or Not of Nudity (Part 2)
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Film and Family
Ep. 27 - The Necessities or Not of Nudity (Part 2)
Jan 15, 2021
Kent & Anna Thalman

We talk about censorship, nudity, sexual content, pornography, how the things we consume affect us and exercising the freedom to choose if you want to watch these things or not.

Studies Cited:

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1984/04/obscenity-how-it-affects-us-how-we-can-deal-with-it?lang=eng

This podcast is owned and sponsored by Invisible Mansion Pictures. For more resources, visit us at: www.invisiblemansion.com

Show Notes Transcript

We talk about censorship, nudity, sexual content, pornography, how the things we consume affect us and exercising the freedom to choose if you want to watch these things or not.

Studies Cited:

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1984/04/obscenity-how-it-affects-us-how-we-can-deal-with-it?lang=eng

This podcast is owned and sponsored by Invisible Mansion Pictures. For more resources, visit us at: www.invisiblemansion.com

Ep.26 - The Necessities or Not of Nudity-Part 2

Kent Thalman: [00:00:00] [00:00:00]Hi, I'm Kent 

[00:00:08] Anna Thalman: [00:00:08] and I'm Anna. 

[00:00:09] Kent Thalman: [00:00:09] And this is film and family. If you are a filmmaker and you're ready to take your relationship with yourself and your film career to the next level, you're in the right place. Hit subscribe to never miss an episode.

[00:00:20] Anna Thalman: [00:00:20] Let's jump right in.

[00:00:21] Well, and something else. So there's this article by Dr. Victor Klein, who is a professor of psychology and, has written a number of articles on this topic and worked with clients on these topics as well in his practice. And so he talks about. How this works in your brain. What starts out as a spectator sport eventually fills your brain with a vast library of anti-social fantasies that have the potential of eventually being acted out, [00:01:00] which can lead to within a healthy marriage, infidelity and sexual addictions. And without outside of a marriage, it can also lead to, Considering rape or aggression, or even just a misunderstanding of, what sex is all about. He said, I found four things that typically happen to someone who became immersed in pornographic material. And it was first in the sequence. They became addicted. So it is addictive, exposing yourself to it enough, they would start to come back for more. And then second, the desire escalates. So like a drug. Eventually that same amount of exposure doesn't satisfy the higher, the dopamine that you would get before. And so you have to, see rougher or more explicit material to get the same level of excitement. So then it escalates and third, they become desensitized to abnormality in behavior. So things that [00:02:00] initially were viewed as offensive or startling or shocking, they eventually accepted. And the brain became so used to them that it wouldn't embrace them, which led to fourth a tendancy or temptation to act out what was witnessed. And. You know, you take all the people who go to jail and it's just most people who end up in jail for violent crimes consume pornography. And that's an addiction. That's hard for them To quit. 

[00:02:29] Kent Thalman: [00:02:29] So pornography obviously has a negative effect on our brains, and I think most people will agree with that. some people will defend pornography, probably because they're addicted to it. And they're going to say that it's not addictive probably because they're in denial, but that, I don't know how you can argue with the science on this. However, we're talking about movies, right? So. Movies aren't pornography, they're art. Right. 

[00:02:49] Anna Thalman: [00:02:49] But if they are appealing to that lower sense, it has the same addictive quality. 

[00:02:53] Kent Thalman: [00:02:53] I would agree with that. So I think that we've got to be wise and say, pornography is the visual portrayal [00:03:00] of sexual activities that appeal to our lower sensual brain. That doesn't mean it's our evil part of our brain. It's just the part of our brain. That's going to drive those kinds of desires. And if we're consuming it, it could have an addictive quality on that same note. this brings up the whole topic of the delineation between erotica and art pornography and art. And where does the art justify the nudity or sexuality and where does that justification fail or does it ever fail? And if it's in the context of a movie. Is it ever pornography? I think some people would say, if it's in a movie, it's a narrative and if there's a narrative it's not pornography. So you kind of have to really figure out what is pornography. I've heard one person define it as no pornography is only something that you masturbate too well. That would mean that if I was looking at stuff for hours on PornHub or some sort of pornographic website, and I wasn't masturbating, that means I'm not looking at pornography. I think that's a radical definition and pretty much untrue because this doesn't say anything about [00:04:00] none of these studies specify that activity as being a qualifying factor of the definition of pornography. So where is that line? It's a kind of fuzzy line, but if it's fuzzy, then I think we better. Exercise, some caution. in what ways do I consume nicotine? Or, some sort of addictive drug, whatever. I don't know. And where's the line there's maybe a degree of I guess there's crystal meth and then you could go down like all the way down to nicotine and you could all the way down to like, Energy drinks. Then you can go down to like mountain Dew and it's like, all of these things are addictive to what strength, to what degree? To what degree is it harmful? You could probably live a pretty high quality, wonderful life and still drink mountain Dew every day. But is it good for you? Well, no, it's not good for you, but you could drink it every day and probably live a pretty good life.

[00:04:49] Anna Thalman: [00:04:49] Well, and You could easily say like it's not affecting me. 

[00:04:52] Kent Thalman: [00:04:52] Right.

[00:04:52] Anna Thalman: [00:04:52] I don't think it is affecting me, 

[00:04:54] Kent Thalman: [00:04:54] but the mountain Dew is affecting you. 

[00:04:55] Anna Thalman: [00:04:55] It is. 

[00:04:55] Kent Thalman: [00:04:55] It's not go na Make you lose your soul and you're not gonna end up in jail because you drink [00:05:00] too much mountain Dew. 

[00:05:00] Anna Thalman: [00:05:00] Well And I think a lot of us like

[00:05:01] Kent Thalman: [00:05:01] unless you steal some from the store. 

[00:05:04]Anna Thalman: [00:05:04] I think that this is as common as sugar, but more addictive. And I think a lot of us are addicted to sugar and don't realize it. And if we start to try to cut it, we might experience withdrawals and realize how difficult it is, how common it is. And every, you know, I can't buy bread without it having sugar in it. It's in everything. 

[00:05:24] Kent Thalman: [00:05:24] So I'm not, we are not advocating that you adopt our exact point of view. We haven't even shared our exact point of view.

[00:05:30] Anna Thalman: [00:05:30] No we haven't, but I think you can kind of pick up on it. 

[00:05:33] Kent Thalman: [00:05:33] Yeah. I mean, you can tell what kind of, what we think there, but we're not advocating that you adopt any specific point of view on art and nudity and sexuality in film, but we are advocating a thoughtfulness that takes into account. It's a potentiality of. Danger right. In all of these sorts of portrayals and being really wise, when we think about what are we putting in the world, what are we putting in ourselves? And. [00:06:00] What are we doing for the cast and crew that we're working in, if we're practitioners have any influence in this industry, which any practitioner has some degree of influence.

[00:06:07] And so let's be wise and, make these decisions from a place of intelligence and not a place of just whim, whatever that decision is, because I think some of us damn ourselves by saying, I'm just going to put my head in the sand and ignore all of it. In fact, I think it takes putting your head in the sand and ignoring all of it to either say nothing is pornography. If it has a storyline. And it's equally as ignorant to say that I'm never going to look at anything ever that's rated r And so, I don't want to criticize people. I'm just saying. Let's think it all the way through and be as intelligent and sensitive and wise as possible. 

[00:06:40] Anna Thalman: [00:06:40] There definitely is a continuum and a varying degree of damage that can come from what you view. And I think generally when people think of pornography, they, they are thinking of kind of the most damaging that's out there, stuff that is purely designed to, arouse those senses and They [00:07:00] often are shown as being violent or that gender imbalance and things like that. but this doctor, in psychology did say most of the people that he saw who would expose themselves to this kind of material were good people who felt like they were the exception. And he just says, watch out for believing, you can journey into the sewer and somehow come out, still smelling like a Rose. It's just. Very hard to escape, and we may see people who seem to be exceptions to that, but that doesn't mean it's a good idea. 

[00:07:33] Kent Thalman: [00:07:33] Well, I think that we can see that based on how much divorce there is in our industry, how much mental illness there is in our industry, how much attempted suicide there is in our industry. That's all correlative. And I'm not saying that because we have nudity in our films, people trying to kill themselves. I'm just saying. There is a correlation and we should, we should dig into that and be thoughtful. And I would encourage people in the research industry to, [00:08:00] dig deeper into these things and, try and, find a causal, route to these issues. But until then, hopefully this was helpful

[00:08:10] Anna Thalman: [00:08:10] well, and there has been lots of research done, and it's just a matter of accessing it and looking for it. If you want to, And I I'm guilty of this too. I think it's easy to think that you can watch things and not be affected. And I think for example, I have never taken much issue with watching things that swear. And I generally try to avoid the F word. I really just dislike that word. And especially when it's used like 60 times in certain films I just avoid that

[00:08:39] Kent Thalman: [00:08:39] now, you know how conservative we are and, you know, I, I don't mean that in a political way obviously, but, but yeah. So your point about that is 

[00:08:48] Anna Thalman: [00:08:48] I just think that it's easy for me to watch things that have swear words in them and feel like, yeah, that's fine. I understand that that's normal for a lot of people and it's not going to affect me. [00:09:00] I don't have any desire to swear. I. don't think it's very attractive language to use. And I have a full vocabulary available to me already, and I can go in and have that mindset. And yet. Since I've become an adult and I've watched more films with some more swearing. I actually find myself thinking those words sometimes in my mind or letting them slip sometimes, which I never, ever used to do. And it's not something that I want to do. I just think it shows that even with that perspective, my brain is still getting exposed and normalized. 

[00:09:35] Kent Thalman: [00:09:35] Conditioned

[00:09:36] Anna Thalman: [00:09:36] Yeah. Conditioned to that, and I've witnessed it in myself and it makes me think, I should be cautious about what I expose myself to, because it does have an effect on me even when I don't think it does 

[00:09:47] Kent Thalman: [00:09:47] well. And it's a good example. And I just think we should be humble. You know, sometimes we get kind of prideful and we're like, no, nothing has an effect on me. And it's well, let's just open up our minds to the fact that it could. I mean, just be humble [00:10:00] and admit that. So I just want to wrap up a little bit here and just say. Well reiterate why we're bringing this topic up in the first place. We are a podcast, all about film and family, and we care about, those two ends, the ends being a healthy family. One of the means to that healthy family is, a living wage and a good career in the film industry, specifically making. Movies like feature length, narrative films, documentary fiction. I don't care. I don't want to exclude commercial filmmakers or, aspirational feature filmmakers, or whatever, but we want to make that into a good living sustainable career. that career is a means to a good family, but. remember that art is a support system for life and not the other way around. That's a Stephen King quote that we'll probably bring up and have brought up. We don't want to let the art become so important that something about the way we make it or [00:11:00] the way we consume it. Destroys or hurts our families. And that's not to say you should be scared of archery. You should be scared of nudity or sexuality. That's not to say that we are telling anyone what to do. We just want to bring this up because we want to be able to bring everything up. We want to be able to talk about everything and be intelligent in the way we consider these things. So hopefully this was maybe your perspective may be a totally different perspective than what you currently have, but at least, we want to represent. Our perspective on this issue and, allow for some hard critical thought on the subject matter. And if you disagree or agree with us or, just have thoughts on this topic, we'd love for you to hit us up on Facebook, and invisible mansion pictures, our page, and you can. Email us@filmsatinvisiblemansion.com, or engage with us in any way that you'd like. if you have you know more thoughts on this. 

[00:11:53] Anna Thalman: [00:11:53] Yeah. And I would encourage you to also check out our podcast on means and ends because I think it ties nicely into this [00:12:00] conversation where, there's a very big difference between means to an end and means being used as an end. And I think in this case, sexual content or just sex and family go hand in hand. Sex is a means to family. It is the way of creating and strengthening family relationships. And it is good. But if it is used as an end for the pleasure that it provides in and of itself, then that's the end goal. You're never going to get to a real end like that. 

[00:12:34] Kent Thalman: [00:12:34] There's no point of fulfillment or satisfaction that will be consummate, you know, complete finished like, 

[00:12:42] Anna Thalman: [00:12:42] well, and that's evidenced by people who think. Oh, once I'm married, I won't desire pornography anymore. 

[00:12:48] Kent Thalman: [00:12:48] Or once I've eaten a hamburger. I'll never want to eat again. Or once I've watered this plant, I'll never have to water it again. Or once I finished cleaning my house, I'll never have to clean again. These are means and means never end, [00:13:00] but ends true ends actually have like a degree of completion or fulfillment. So that's an interesting. 

[00:13:10]Anna Thalman: [00:13:10] you said means never end, which I don't think is quite 

[00:13:13]Kent Thalman: [00:13:13] Well if, if the means are the end, you'll never get to the end because it's not an end it's a means. 

[00:13:18] Anna Thalman: [00:13:18] And they can prevent you from the end that you want. If you stop there and then you you're limiting yourself and your capacity for joy and growth. And on the other hand, like it can be a means to a beautiful end. 

[00:13:31]Kent Thalman: [00:13:31] Yeah. Like, a film career being the means to. A sustainable family. Whereas if I'm sustaining my family, my film career is fulfilling its purpose. But if my whole purpose is having a successful film career, and it's not for the sake of serving other people, how do I measure the completion of that? End if a successful film career is the end, I can always make more money and I could always make bigger movies. I could also, I could always make more movies more rapidly, better, more whatever. Like I could make movies that more [00:14:00] people like than dislike. And how do you measure that? It's, it's sort of a mechanism towards something toward connection towards whatever your end is with the art. The art is a means. Art is never an end in and of itself. And when it becomes that, I guess it just. Sort of consumes your life and, yeah, well, 

[00:14:19] Anna Thalman: [00:14:19] and as far as how to apply this, I just want to briefly touch on that. because I think often we want to ask, well, where do I draw the line? What do I have to cut? But I think more importantly is to ask yourself, instead of focusing on what you have to cut, focus on seeking for the very best out there. And there's plenty out there. That's very good and very wholesome. And we found this as we, Curate our film or not our film diet, but our film diet and our actual food diet is like seeking for the best in taste and health. It's not healthy just because it's devoid of poison, health is actually seeking after nutrition. And so I think there's [00:15:00] more to it than just like, What am I going to cut? But it's, what am I going to spend my time, feeding my mind with? 

[00:15:08] Kent Thalman: [00:15:08] And, and no matter what your personal values, limitations or lack thereof are, there's more media in the world than you could ever consume in a single lifetime, even films. There are more films in the world that meet your personal criteria or values. Then you'll ever have time to consume. So don't ever look at it as like a, I'm going to watch less movies. Now. It's like, no, just go find the greatest movies that already exist. We're vetting criteria and collection BFI, all the subscription services, our local library. And it's not like a ton of research and it's not super hard to find like you find one great filmmaker and then you find that guy's inspirations or that gate, or that lady's inspirations and wham, you, you just open up this world of more movies and. We're never going to run out of movies. We're just not, 

[00:15:58] Anna Thalman: [00:15:58] we're never gonna have time to watch all the good [00:16:00] movies we want to watch.

[00:16:00] Kent Thalman: [00:16:00] And I'd say nine times out of 10, we watch really good movies that we like. And like, I'd say four or five times out of 10, we watch excellent movies and one or two times out of 10, which is still really common. We watched life-changing movies. I swear. We watch a life-changing movie once a. Once or twice a month where I watch a movie and I'm like, Oh my gosh, that's one of the most amazing movies I've ever seen. I actually feel like those limitations have helped me focus on the best movies out there. whatever those limitations are. I just want to say that again, like I'm not advocating for very specific, prescriptions here. 

[00:16:30] Anna Thalman: [00:16:30] Yeah. And same thing with like our health. When we eat at home, we have delicious food. Like I think we've found some really yummy food that we eat and. Yeah. It's not like there's no scarcity like hunger, but we have decided there's certain things like we just don't cook with concentrated sugars at all. That doesn't limit us at all. 

[00:16:50] Kent Thalman: [00:16:50] I still get fat by eating too many calories and only be eating healthy things. But yeah, 

[00:16:56] Anna Thalman: [00:16:56] I think it's good to just decide like what, what am I going to [00:17:00] cut if I'm going to cut something and then look for things that you like that don't have that or substituted out. Like when we're cooking, we'll often just take our favorite recipes and substitute out. the sugar for a natural sweetener like honey. 

[00:17:13] Kent Thalman: [00:17:13] What does this have to do with film

[00:17:14] Anna Thalman: [00:17:14] well, I think that the way this relates to film is it's like, first of all, I just want to say, if you, if you are planning to do this, a great reference is, IMDB. What I don't recommend is going by ratings alone, because I think ratings are just all over the board and not helpful at all. And they change over time.

[00:17:32] Kent Thalman: [00:17:32] yeah so Don't let other people make your viewing decisions for you. 

[00:17:34] Anna Thalman: [00:17:34] yeah That's just them deciding for you and being kind of lazy. But yeah. You can look on IMDB parent's guide and see exactly what content there is as far as violence, swearing. 

[00:17:44] Kent Thalman: [00:17:44] it's context-less, unfortunately, I've heard some people complain that it has spoilers. There's more to movies than spoilers you guys. I think spoilers, even if, either way there's more to movies than spoilers. We watch films because they're art. And if it's only about the narrative pazazz, [00:18:00] then you're just watching movies for pure. Purely for entertainment. And if that's the only reason you're watching, then 

[00:18:04] Anna Thalman: [00:18:04] we do it every time we watch a film, it's never a problem. it's never been a problem for me. So it just helps to know. And then you can decide going into it. You're never surprised. You're never like, Oh, I wouldn't say never, but usually you're not surprised by anything. You just. Go in feeling comfortable, knowing what to expect. And if there's things you don't want there are plenty of editing services, clear play makes it very easy to take out content. You don't want to see. 

[00:18:29] Kent Thalman: [00:18:29] And that's a whole argument in of itself to some people have an issue with, These are services that you can use if you want them, if you don't like 

[00:18:35] Anna Thalman: [00:18:35] they are available to you, I want you to know that

[00:18:37]Kent Thalman: [00:18:37] you don't care about that. Yeah, if You don't care about parents guide and you don't care about editing them. I guess the part of this, this part of that podcast, isn't for you. But I do know there are people out there that want those options and for Anna and I, we want to watch a lot of the canonical films. occasionally we get around to saying this is a film that's really relevant. Maybe we're working on a project that this film would be, it would be kind of irresponsible for us not to watch this because it's so [00:19:00] related to the topic that we are. You know, addressing in the film that we're making that we're going to watch it. we're just going to edit out some things. If we have, if we take issue with them, one of the best movies I've ever seen, we really like Anna Karenina by Joe Wright 2012, 

[00:19:12] Anna Thalman: [00:19:12] it's a masterpiece. 

[00:19:14] Kent Thalman: [00:19:14] I think it's great. Yeah. I wouldn't watch it without an, without a filter because my own personal values. and the way I feel like they irresponsibly portrayed some of the sexual behavior in that film that said. On the flip side, they do some really constructive stuff talking about, some of those issues constructive, in my opinion, some people didn't like that movie. that's the case with any movie, but, anyway, so hopefully, you feel like this was empowering and hopefully if you are of at least some degree of a like-mind. As, sort of our opinions on, on this, you don't have to be, you don't feel alone because I feel like we are those that have certain media values who want to make thoughtful, rich, artistic stuff. And they're not just trying to make like propagandistic films that espouse their unbeliefs, but they actually want to make art. That's [00:20:00] challenging. sometimes I have felt. Alone in my opinions, in college or in the film industry circles. And most people don't agree with us. So I think there's more of us out there than we think. So I don't want us to feel alone. I think we should not be ashamed of the values we have or the feelings or beliefs that we have. They're just movies. 

[00:20:18] Anna Thalman: [00:20:18] Well, and it doesn't have to stop you from making stuff. 

[00:20:20] Kent Thalman: [00:20:20] Yeah.

[00:20:21]Anna Thalman: [00:20:21] And from going to film school, and I definitely know people who. Were interested in that career path and chose not to specifically because they thought I can't be in that career without being exposed to these things, compromising my values or as an actor, 

[00:20:35] Kent Thalman: [00:20:35] but it's not true you can.

[00:20:36] Anna Thalman: [00:20:36] I'm sleeping around with people or acting out in ways. I don't feel comfortable, but that's absolutely not true. And we just want to share that for us. We have certain values. This is how we keep them. It's not stopping us. And just, if that's something you're also trying to do. there's some hopefully helpful resources for you to think about and use.

[00:20:55] Kent Thalman: [00:20:55] Awesome. let's wrap up this episode and, we appreciate you joining us for this likely [00:21:00] two-part episode. and, just look forward to hearing from you about this topic, if you like, and, seeing you on the next podcast episode, thanks for joining us today. If you like what you're learning on the podcast, the best way you can compliment us as always is by giving us a five star review.

[00:21:15] Anna Thalman: [00:21:15] Yeah, or referral. And when you're ready to take these tools to the next level and really apply what you're learning on the podcast to your life, we can help. We have a program it's called the film and family program, where you get to experience your very own real character arc. So we know that a lot of you are feeling that you want something badly and you're having a hard time getting it, and we're going to help you get it. We'll help you discover. Your unique story and make your own life, your greatest masterpiece. and hopefully that will help you be able to tell stories from a place of authority and authenticity from your own experience. I think as filmmakers, we have the unique. Gift of being able to, as a living, inspire others, to live their [00:22:00] dreams, by showing them examples of what's possible, both in the stories we tell and even more powerfully in our personal lives, which are real. And so basically you can't do this for others until you've done it for yourself. And that starts with you. And with your story and your journey. We do that in the film and family program. 

[00:22:19] Kent Thalman: [00:22:19] Awesome. click the link in the show notes to learn more and check out some of the helpful links that we've included in the show notes to dig deeper on the topic that we talked about today, and thanks so much for joining us. We'll see you on the next episode. Bye 

[00:22:32] Anna Thalman: [00:22:32] bye.