Portrayal of Child and Adolescent Development in The Film Boyhood

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About this sample


Words: 1402 |

Pages: 3|

8 min read

Published: Oct 2, 2020

Words: 1402|Pages: 3|8 min read

Published: Oct 2, 2020

Richard Linklater is the director of a film called BoyHood. The film follows the development of two siblings Mason and Samantha in increments of 12 years until Mason and Samantha become young adults. There ascribe status is of a broken home, experiencing g the circumstances of their parents Mason Sr and Oliva being divorced. Making Oliva a working single young mother. The movie is focused on the experience of Mason’s life cycle in under three hours. The premise of the movie focuses on the Biosocial, Cognitive, and Psychosocial development of Mason, explaining the direct effect on his overall development to the ongoing young adult he will become.

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Puberty is a part of a child’s development growth, it is an explanation of biosocial development. Biosocial is when the body begins to experience a change of chemical messengers called hormones that leads to sexual maturation. At the beginning of the film, Mason is sitting down next to his friend in front of a trailer giggling and pointing at pictures in an X rated magazine. Mason had asked his mother about going over to his friend’s house when in reality he went an abandoned house with his friend’s older brothers where they were drinking. Both of the older boys were talking about bringing girls over and asked Mason if he had sexual intercourse with someone. Mason agreed to be with someone even though he had not. As Mason is emerging into adulthood, he ventures off to visit his sister Samantha in college Mason was accompanied by the first girlfriend Shenna that he had an emotional attachment. As they arrive at Samantha’s college both Mason and Sheena consent to having intimacy in Samantha’s roommate’s bed. During the middle stage. This shows the mature development of puberty Mason is experiencing in his life, in his early stage everything was funny and as time went Mason participates in those encountered feelings towards someone. In between all the changes occurring while Mason gets older his voice gets deeper and his vocabulary changes, as he reaches different levels of education and has more mature connections to his way of thinking.

Cognitive development is important for the shaping of a functioning adult, which can be divided into three different elements. Specifically, the cognitive development from adolescent is divided into the logic of self, two modes of thinking and secondary education. One of three elements Logic and self refers to the aspects of cognitive growth beginning with an excessive center of attention to oneself (egocentric) and shifting towards having a reasonable concept. Mason and Samantha are seen in constant movement from school to school and just as Oliva kept moving with her family she also moved along with love. The first one began with her professor Bill at the university Oliva was taking classes while Mason was in middle school. As time went on Bill will take the authoritarian role of giving Mason chores that Mason n his mind didn’t think was that important. Every time Bill will complain about something Mason wouldn’t accomplish Mason would not say anything and would look for his mother to be his voice. As time goes on, there was a shift in character in Bill, he had become alcoholic that was mentally and physically abusive to his family, which had also involved his children from a previous marriage. Oliv was fed up with abuse and eventually left taking only Mason and Samantha with her. In the course of reconstructing her life, Oliva fulfills her teaching credentials and becomes a professor at a university and gets into another love connection with one of her students Jim. Oliva also moves in together with Jim and one day Mason went out to drink with his friends and when arrived home was confronted by drunk Jim in front of the porch from getting home late. Mason understood that Jim was not his father and understood that Jim could not tell him what to do because he was not his father. Moving forward, Mason might have seen his mother’s relationships fail miserably every time, but this has impacted the modes of thinking of mason has he grown older. When Mason was in high school and meets his first love Sheena as previously stated, things did not turn it that great for Mason either as Sheena cheats on him with another guy. Mason felt like he was securely attached to his ex-girlfriend to which they talk things out because he is starting another journey which is college, even though he doesn't know how to feel or may seem a bit lost he gave love a second chance when he arrives at college and is being introduced to new roommates, just like his mother did.

John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth have an interesting theory of attachment that was important for psychological development, both believed that close attachment led people to have emotional bonds. Tied into Erickson’s stages the one seen in the movie relates to Identity and role confusion. Adolescence, largely regarded as a period of time in a person’s life where he or she experiences major changes in terms of physical growth and mental development. It is a time in life, usually from the age of 12-18. Adolescents who have moved from one place to another usually have a lower confidence level, live an uncomfortable lifestyle and get very little support from the environment. The importance of an emotional attachment is seen throughout the film. In chronological order, Mason is challenged to identify himself and who he is, he is seen with many different looks implying that he is lost with a role in society. Mason is challenged by nit only his both stepfather, questioning him about having him paint his nails and Bill cutting off his long hair without even asking him followed his confusion to college. In high school, Mason is pursuing film and photography but is defiant in a class by hiding in the lightroom for a long period of time until his professor found him. His stubbornness gets challenged when his professor tells him he has to take pictures of the football time as a punishment for not being in class and invites him to really think about what he wants to do with his life. Mason seems to not have insintric motivation to figure out what’s the next psychosocial support can assist people in making informed decisions and motivate them to do better. Lastly, psychosocial development can also have to do with what you are exposed to in life such as drugs and abuse. Mason is exposed to drugs and abuse by his first stepfather Bill, because of this Mason might have thought that this was normal, and ended up smoking and drinking at a young age. This not only made him experience sadness nad anger but it also made him feel alienated from the word because he was always lost in his own identity.

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To conclude the film has perfect examples of the main points of a child’s development. Cognitive Development is a time of great change for a child. It is a time where they begin to explore who they are as individuals and develop their own identities as they get closer to adulthood. For biosocial For boys, hormonal increases lead to more thoughts about sex, causing rapidly increasing hormone levels, especially testosterone, which causes more rapid arousal of emotions. Psychosocial one’s psychological development in, and interaction with, a social environment. Involving both the psychological and social aspects of human development. Child development includes physical, intellectual, social, and emotional changes. Children grow and mature at very different rates. Parents have the most powerful direct effect on children's development and are themselves acted upon by interlocking systems that determine their individual and parental functioning. Knowing what I know a bit about development it answers so many questions on why you are who you are. I believe there are two ways of learning things and that is: The first, being able to experience it yourself and the second is seeing it unfold within your eyes. Having seen the film made me comprehend that growing up is a process and your experience and directions you chose to follow really stay with you for the rest of your life. The development of a child most often occur in unpredictable stages. Although every child develops in a unique way, all children are expected to get influence by their environment at different age level.

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Portrayal Of Child And Adolescent Development In The Film Boyhood. (2020, October 10). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 21, 2024, from
“Portrayal Of Child And Adolescent Development In The Film Boyhood.” GradesFixer, 10 Oct. 2020,
Portrayal Of Child And Adolescent Development In The Film Boyhood. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 21 Jun. 2024].
Portrayal Of Child And Adolescent Development In The Film Boyhood [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2020 Oct 10 [cited 2024 Jun 21]. Available from:
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