Beating Covid-19 Stress: The Science Behind Post Apocalyptic Movies

Rohan Mathew

Updated on:

What can be more timely than watching post-apocalyptic movies in this time of pandemic? Researchers in the UK studied the effects of doomsday movies on people during this uncertain time. They discovered that those who watch end-of-the-world films are better able to cope with the crisis than those who do not.

A majority of the British people in London observed that the coronavirus situation in the world is like the plot of a doomsday movie. Others also say that these films help them escape from the stress caused by the spread of Covid-19. Watching those movies makes them feel comfortable amidst the lockdowns.

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A Coping Mechanism

NOW TV conducted a survey on 2,000 residents in London to understand the reason for this rising movie trend. Twenty-four percent of the population admit that they watch post-apocalyptic movies to make themselves feel better despite the lockdowns. The survey revealed that end-of-the-world films make people more resilient and emotionally stable.

With the truth being said, it would also be interesting to know the science behind this behavior. A psychologist explained that watching post-apocalyptic movies helps people prepare for a second wave of the outbreak. It has indeed become a coping mechanism against the fear brought about by Covid – 19.

How The Brain Works

The coronavirus pandemic had brought so many negative emotions on people since it started. There have been many reports of mental breakdowns, depression, and even suicide. People need good therapy to help them overcome this mental crisis.

How does watching The Hunger Games help people fight the anxiety brought by Covid-19? It happens in the brain, and it involves these three natural tendencies.

  • Escapism – There are only two ways to cope with a stressful situation. Either you fight or flee. But, with the kind of unseen enemy like the coronavirus, fleeing is the better option. The physical flight involved staying at home and avoiding contact with so many people. However, social distancing also triggers another kind of crisis that affects mental health. The people need another place to escape, and that is in the world of post-apocalyptic movies.
  • Empathy – As you bury yourself into that imaginary world of Robert Neville, you will slowly come to understand how scientists struggle to find the cure for the coronavirus disease. Watching I Am Legend somehow gives you a mental experience of how scientists wreck their brains to figure out how to beat Covid-19. As you watch those characters on that small screen, you also experience their emotions. That’s called empathy, and it leads you to feel compassion for these people. You will also get to share their feelings of victory in the end.
  • Resonance – Emotional resonance is the thought process of feeling the emotions of another person. Empathy is the result of this process. Psychologists use resonance as a counseling technique when dealing with mental patients. You experience resonance when you watch post-apocalyptic movies like Outbreak and Contagion. These movies can make you experience the two types of resonance. When you feel tensed watching a scene from that movie, you are experiencing identical resonance. It means feeling the exact feeling of the other. Emotional resonance is crying or laughing with the characters in the film.

Watching post-apocalyptic movies is a great mental exercise. It helps the brain to analyze the stressful situation cause by the Covid-19 crisis, and it enables the viewers to visualize a hopeful future after the pandemic. It also helps the brain to sift out the negative emotions from the positive ones. Finally, it provides a mental haven where one can get away from the stress of the Covid-19 crisis.

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Finding Post-Apocalyptic Movies

As medical experts and world leaders are working hard to win this war against Covid-19, the people who are stuck at home are also facing another battle in their minds. They are fighting the stress that comes from social distancing and the threat of coronavirus infection.

At this time of uncertainty, watching a good movie can help keep the stress away. You can watch post-apocalyptic movies to shift your mind away from those negative emotions caused by the pandemic. If you need help finding these movies, you can download the Friendspire app. They have lots of good movies available for streaming. Go ahead and pick one them right now.

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