PETALING JAYA: Young people today are in danger of turning to gangsterism because they are being fed on a media diet that is high on violence, danger and crime, says a top criminologist.
Criminologist Assoc Prof Dr P. Sundramoorthy of Universiti Sains Malaysia believes younger viewers should have limited exposure to violent images on and off screen.
“The developing young mind could misinterpret what it sees as acceptable social behaviour,” said Dr Sundramoorthy.
He stresses the danger lies in excessive viewings of films with violent imagery, crude language and sexual aggression.
He says most viewers are drawn to gangster flicks or films that highlight deviant behaviour because crime is a hot topic and easy to relate to.
“Crime is a realistic aspect of life that most viewers read or talk about on a daily basis. I believe people are drawn to gangster flicks because being in dangerous situations such as those portrayed in crime-related flicks is likely to happen to them or someone they know.”
“Films provide a sense of information or relief that there is something you can do to protect yourself and the ones you know.” he added
Dr Sundramoorthy was commenting on whether the popularity of gangster films in the local entertainment industry had any influence on the current spate of crime and gangsterism in the country. This year alone, local film producers have released at least six gangster-related films.
On Finas’ list of all-time top-grossing films is Syamsul Yusof’s KL Gangster. Released in 2011, the film made over RM11.7mil during its run in cinemas. Another gangster-related movie, Kongsi (2011), is also in the top five. The prequel to KL Gangster, KL Gangster 2, will be released later this year.
More on gangsterism as portrayed in film in Asia and Hollywood (http://www.thestar.com.my/Lifestyle/Entertainment/Movies/News/2013/08/30/Mean-streets.aspx)