What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that ReGeneration is a Ryan Gosling-narrated documentary that explores why today's youths seem so apathetic and cynical about the world's problems. Many theories are formed, and a few solutions are offered, but the gist is to encourage questioning the status quo and to assert that one voice can make a difference. There are a few violent images of the kind you might see on the evening news (war, poverty, street violence, the aftermath of disaster, etc.), as well as a couple of salty words ("s--t" and "a--hole"). But none of the content is gratuitous, and any teen of high school age could and should see ReGeneration.
What's the story?
Directed by Phillip Montgomery and narrated/produced by Ryan Gosling, REGENERATION analyzes some of the problems going on in the world today -- including war, climate change, stagnating wages, debt, and more. It wonders why, if things weren't even this bad in the turbulent 1960s, are today's teens so complacent and apathetic? The film suggests that media saturation is a huge culprit. Interviewing experts, artists, parents, and teens, ReGeneration doesn't offer very many specific solutions to the problem it poses, but it does encourage teens to understand what's going on and speak up. The smallest effort may make a small difference, but no effort at all will change absolutely nothing.
Is it any good?
With ReGeneration, Montgomery has created a well-rounded documentary. She goes straight to the top with experts like Noam Chomsky and personalities like Talib Kweli and deconstructs the way that people -- and especially teens -- absorb information from the media. According to the movie, this information is mainly just advertising of some kind. So, though teens think they can be happy by buying stuff, it only makes them feel emptier, and they don't know why.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about a healthy media diet. If the media is responsible for getting kids and teens not to think about world issues, how can critical thinking be encouraged?
What are some of the solutions ReGeneration suggests? What are some other possible solutions to the problems the movie mentions?
Does the movie make you feel hopeful or pessimistic? Why?