According to a study conducted on this approach and published in the journal Arts in Psychotherapy (Johnson & Alderson, 2008), Therapeutic Filmmaking leads to the kind of changes clients want to achieve in therapy by providing the following factors:
Positive Experiences: Therapy is fun, engaging, and helpful
Feelings of Mastery: Clients learn to do something new that is fun, creative, and interesting
Perceptual Shift: Clients get a different perspective on everything in their lives
Changed Perception of Self: Clients are able to see themselves differently
Changed Perspective on Interactions: Seeing their interactions with others differently can provide meaningful perspective on relationships with others
Humour as Healing: Clients develop a more positive way to look at their own life
The Personal as the Subject in Filmmaking: Clients learn things about themselves that they would not have noticed otherwise
Film as a Focusing Agent: The film helps focus discussion and reflection
Film as a Catalyst for Discussion: Clients are able to communicate through visuals, artifacts, song, etc., and this contributes to deeper discussion with their therapist
Compared to Other Forms of Therapy: Clients feel more in control, more engaged, and more excited about their therapy compared to other forms of therapy.
Source: Johnson, J.L., & Alderson, K.G. (2008). Therapeutic filmmaking: An exploratory pilot study. Arts in Psychotherapy, 35(1), 11-19.