|Index||3 reviews in total|
Okay, I'll admit that this isn't the most exciting short Hollywood ever made, but for what it is, it is very well made and compelling. The film appears to be strongly influenced by John B. Watson's and B. F. Skinner's work on behavioral conditioning, as it tries to show the link between studies involving mice and how they relate to educational topics such as developing a defeatist attitude and multiple intelligences. It actually did a very nice job of explaining all this and showing a lot of the basis for the revamping of education in the 1930s and 40s. I love this short because I am a teacher who teaches psychology and it's a perfect match for my curriculum. I just discovered the film and plan on using it in my lectures on animal behavior and shaping. This will be a great addition to the film I already show students on how psychologists have trained rats to do amazing things for rewards--such as The Discovery Place's rat basketball games in Charlotte, NC!
A rather tame, boring short subject from John Nesbitt's "Passing
Parade" purports to show how the behavior of mice can be studied in
relation to the interaction of school children. It begins with a 1910
schoolhouse scene to show old-fashioned teaching methods and soon
reverts to the '40s to show what a difference there is between today's
manner of instruction with the knowledge that "all children do not
learn in the same way"--tracing the new knowledge to experiments made
with white mice who are rewarded for finding food by finding their way
through a maze.
There's even the suggestion that an inferiority complex can develop when one of the mice realizes that he's going to lose the competition for the third time and stays within his confines. It's an interesting theory and it's sufficiently developed within the short running time of this short.
Should appeal to anyone in the psychiatric or educational field, but not likely to impress anyone else sufficiently. Directed by George Sidney, who later became one of MGM's workmanlike directors of film musicals like "Show Boat".
Willie and the Mouse (1941)
** 1/2 (out of 4)
MGM/Passing Parade short showing how mice are used to try and see how children learn and how they react to not winning. This is a pretty fun little film that moves pretty quickly at ten minutes. The stuff dealing with the children is pretty boring but the stuff with the mice is pretty interesting. Directed by George Sidney who would go on to direct various musicals including Annie Get Your Gun, Show Boat and Viva Las Vegas.
This film isn't on DVD as of yet but you can catch it playing on Turner Classic Movies from time to time.
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