Why does the human mind feel the need to be constantly entertained? Why has the demand for entertainment been higher than it was a hundred years ago?
My opinion is this: quick entertainment has become something like a drug.
When I was younger the simplest things kept my interest for hours on end; now I find myself groping around for something to keep me busy the moment I am not entertained. Why am I no longer content to think simply for the sake of thinking or be satisfied with having to do things that provide no entertainment value?
When I do the ironing or wash dishes I listen to my mp3 player and I find that because of that I do not use such times to think about things or form new opinions or gather new information of importance.
The main goal of writing is to entertain people; the whole entire point of an intriguing opening, a gripping plot a dramatic climax and satisfying conclusion is to entertain the reader. However, the difference between watching a movie and reading a book is that the book requires your mind to be engaged.
The pictures aren't flashing in front of your eyes and you can't go brain dead and still be able to understand it. A book is more of a suggestion, the description of a blizzard or a battle is there for you but your mind has to fill in bits of information, it has to think for itself and create the picture. It has to work.
The more movies and quick entertainment we use to fill in the spaces the lazier our mind becomes and the harder it is to get into deep thinking. Teenagers mature later and no one forms their own opinions because they never expose their minds to the suggestion that it is possible. They hear of something that sounds cause-worthy and run pell-mell with it and claim it as their own without ever thinking it through.
A book only has as much entertainment value as the reader gives it. Going brain dead and opting for easier entertainment will not give you the skills to think for yourself and adapt creatively to life.
Though, I am not saying there are no good movies, movies like “Inception” are hard to walk away from without thinking.
We are in an era of amusement just as the renaissance was the age of humanism.