Film violence and free expression

Regarding the article "Researcher Links Violence on TV With Aggression," April 7: While I share many of the concerns of Leonard Eron, psychologist, regarding violence in the movies, I totally disagree with his assessment of the film "The Silence of the Lambs," as well as his judgment that giving an Oscar to the movie sends a message to children condoning the violence of some of the characters.

Children belong nowhere near "Silence," but that is the responsibility of parents and theater owners, not filmmakers. But to suggest, as Mr. Eron implies and others have stated, that the film can be seen as a glorification of serial murderers is ridiculous.

Critics of movie violence need to be more careful to distinguish between the gratuitous violence of some movies and other films that explore grim but important issues in a morally serious fashion.

Filmmakers need the freedom to explore those issues even though many will exploit them.

Since film violence is not likely to go away, we had best find ways to constructively evaluate it, while doing what we can to make the real world less violent. Marc Belanger, Greenfield, Mass.

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