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Strangers in the House

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By the time they leave school, most North American children will have seen 8,000 TV murders, 100,000 other acts of violence and over 600,000 commercials. TV violence and addiction, commercialism, the V-chip and the death of imagination--these are just some of the key issues tackled by this documentary on the world's most powerful medium. Strangers in the House features interviews with culture critic Neil Postman; George Gerbner, the guru of TV violence studies; John Pungente of the Jesuit Communication Project--and, of course, TV-watching kids. While Strangers in the House raises troubling questions about TV, it avoids simplistic solutions and inspires both parents and children to action. It suggests that one of the ways to counter TV's more sinister effects is to widely promote media literacy--so that children can learn to be smarter than television.

1997, 52 min