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Social Guidance Films

Social Guidance Films Just a general discussion on old social guidance films.  Our free article center was formed to help you build, plan, and execute your wood working project as smoothly as possible.


One of our most popular sellers is social guidance films, so we thought we'd give you a little more insight on where these films came from.


Social guidance films are a whole category of films that try to guide children and young adults, as well as adults, to behave, act, and even think in a certain manner. If you went to public schools, you pretty much were exposed to the indoctrination efforts of the establishment.  Although they are shown much less today, they do still exist.  The height of popularity of these films was from the 50's to the 70s.  No topic was off limits.  From courtesy, to table manners, personal responsibility, sexual behavior, dating, drug abuse, driver's ed, marriage personal finance, violence, and other forms of juvenile delinquency.  If someone thought it was wrong, a film was made.



While there were several production companies, the majority of these films were produced by big name corporations such as Coronet Films, Centron Corporation, and even Encyclop√¶dia Britannica.  Some films were also roduced by maverick independent filmmakers such as Sid Davis, dubbed by author Ken Smith as the "King of Calamity" for his often calamitous narratives.

Many films gained notoriety for their outrageous topics.  We try to collect many of those in our catalog as those are our most popular.  Some examples include Duck and Cover (instructing children to duck under their desks in case of nuclear war, and including the famous cartoon with the turtle and the stick of dynamite to illustrate the point), and Boys Beware, a film warning of the dangers of male homosexuals, actually described as pedophiles.

Appearances In Other Media

Many of these films have achieved cult status and have been used in more modern productions outside of their intended purpose. Several short social guidance films, such as Posture Pals and Are You Ready for Marriage?, were featured and lampooned on the television comedy series Mystery Science Theater 3000 to provide padding for episodes in which the featured movie and host segments could not fill out the program's roughly 90-minute running time. On The Weird Al Show, clips from still other films were taken and edited together with new voiceovers to make parodies.  Many more examples exist.


Today's Relevance


The federal gov't has greatly reduced the budgeting of these films in the 70's.  Today, hardly any are made any more due primarily to their lack of effect in today's internet age.  These films relied heavily on the fact that they were a prime source of information to that generations youth.  Rather today, with the internet and cable TV, today's youth is more exposed to different piece of pop culture very early on.  Impressions are made, opinions are formed, and it becomes hard to change peoples minds.


Most of these films, when watched today, provide little more than comic relief, which certainly does have a value.  As far as their intended purpose, well, the message might be the same, but the method of delivery is way outdated.  Most youth would not be reached by these films.  Yet they still provide a valuable look back in time at where we were, and where many of us would still like to be.