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Watching movies can be therapeutic. We can observe the cause and effect of actions that are resolved within the relatively short timespan of a film. Cinema therapy can be helpful to those suffering from the effects of trauma or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Cinema therapy can help us learn to look at our past experiences from an observer’s perspective. By watching movies or other forms of dramatic entertainment, we can begin to understand events from our own lives as parts to our story and history. 

Traumatic events and PTSD can distort a person’s view of their own history. They may divide their lives into two parts: before trauma and after trauma. This creates a schism and causes our entire personal history to revolve around one event or a series of events. We might neglect the other parts of our lives as being insignificant in comparison or long for the time prior to our trauma. By watching movies in cinema therapy, we can gain perspective on life as we watch events unfold on the screen. We can then adopt this perspective onto the way we view our own lives. We can start to distance ourselves from our personal history and look at it as a series of events. We can start to minimize the significance of our trauma by realizing that our lives are full of good times and bad times. While healing from trauma can be painful and take time when we have perspective on our entire personal history–both the good and the bad–we can reduce the negative impact of trauma on our lives. We can then begin to move forward and continue to play out the movie of our lives.


Cinema therapy can help those suffering from trauma to put their lives into perspective by learning to look at life from an outsider’s point-of-view. When we watch events unfold on the screen, we can see the cause and effect of actions to their resolution. Learning to take on the perspective of others can give us insight into our own lives. We can begin to heal from trauma when we realize that our lives have both good moments and bad moments. The good times are just as significant to our growth as the bad, and when we realize that we have much more life to live, we can move forward. Cinema therapy is a form of expressive therapy that you can try at The Guest House. The Guest House offers a multitude of different approaches to treating trauma. Call us today at (855) 483-7800 for more information.