AMS2022 Learning Session
Talking Pictures: Working Therapeutically with Mindful Movie-Watching
Film therapy, the therapeutic use of movies in psychological therapies, is a growing area of interest to therapists and researchers. This paper presents the MOVIE model of film therapy, a widely applicable, trauma-informed framework for working with film imagery and themes in individual or group therapy, counsellor education and self-help. Film or cinema therapy is a highly accessible and relatable method for many diverse client and student groups with benefits that include catharsis and emotional processing, greater ease of dialogue around issues, increased empathy, and interpersonal learning, engaging with new perspectives and learning skills. Following the model we mindfully observe and voice emotional and psychological responses to movie watching, identify how the imagery, characters, themes, and narrative symbolize personal experience and consider any new possibilities that emerged through re-authoring personal narratives.
Jenny is a counsellor, mindfulness teacher and an academic working in counsellor education. Jenny has worked in the public, private and charity sectors, helping a diverse range of clients to find their path. Through this work Jenny developed specialist experience in working via telephone, managing and supervising helping professionals and careers coaching. After several years delivering workplace training in counselling skills and theory to helping professionals, Jenny worked as a senior lecturer and course leader in counsellor education and has written and designed degree and Masters level programmes in counselling, mental health, wellbeing and resilience. As a mindfulness teacher, Jenny has taught mindfulness to staff and students in higher education, to NHS staff and to staff in social services. Jenny combines a passion for therapy and wellbeing with her background in film and media studies and has published and developed methods in film therapy.