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Why Are There So Few Smartphones In Popular Movies?



You have to admit that smartphone use is way too common in the real world, and rare in movies. That makes our biggest movies totally unrealistic. So what? We don't go to movies to see the real world; we go to movie to escape the real world. Evan Puschak, the Nerwriter, analyzed the top movies of 2018 to determine how much and how smart phones are used in them, and found some interesting results. The "why" is pretty simple, if you ask me. While many of us use smart phones all day long, we don't really care to watch other people do it. That's not interesting. And if you think smart phone use is rare, Puschak also looks into the appearances of social media, too. -via Laughing Squid


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There is also the fact that smartphones have the potential to short-circuit the plot of many movie genres -- for example, the group of random people encountering the creature out in the woods, and no one believes their story afterward... except they had smartphones, and they've got more than a dozen pictures of it. Or being lost... except that they have a smartphone, and GPS and Google Maps shows them where they need to go. Or they're injured out in the boonies, and have to try to survive with a crippling injury... except that they have a smartphone, and can just call for help. When the characters in a movie have smartphones, the script has to go through gyrations to set things up so that the smartphone is useless, in order to prevent them from derailing the plot.
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When the tropes were created mobile phones and smart phones didn't exist. It's a very slow learning curve to adjust plotting with new technology. Do you know how long it took for TV and Movies to acknowledge that people had cell phones. The characters in Buffy the Vampire Slayer didn't have cell phones until their last season in 2003. In my small midwestern town we had them as early as 1999 so you know they were more prevalent in California years before that. They are just getting used to have mobile phones effecting the plots. That's why any smartphones seen are only used for calls or facetime which is more visually dynamic.
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