Human is a very unique creature. Unlike other creatures, human is given by God so many abilities. There are many amazing things about human that are interesting to be analyzed. Human mind is one thing in which is interesting to be analyzed. Although animal also have their mind inside, somehow human mind have more complexity than animal do. This is the main reason why human mind has influenced many scientists especially from psychological are interested to analyze it such as Sigmund Freud, Jacques Lacan, Anna Freud, etc. In human mind, there one thing lies that makes those scientists become curious. It is named personality. This kind of thing is owned only by human not by other creatures. That is why human becomes more complex than others.
Personality is a psychological concept that reflects acquired behavioral trends of a person. A person can value others type of behavior from their personality. Personality is built when human are starting to reach age about five years and it develops until adult. There are several elements which influence a person in building the personality. Those elements are working together in constructing that person personality. Meanwhile, human mind and personality cannot be separated each others because both of them have a connection. Human mind influences how individual personality is reflected and on the other hand, personality indirectly reflects behavioral trend of a person. Since both of them are connected each other, if there is something wrong on one of them, there should be something wrong anyway on the other.
In general, one person only has one personality that defines him/her among others and it is uncommon if there are two personalities within a single person. If a person has more than one personality, the person likely suffers from a kind of personality disorder. It is because in psychology, there is no individual who has more than one personality and there should be something lies behind that makes this phenomenon happens onto reality. There are a lot of causes of this condition to happen. The causes might come either from inside or outside of that person such as the influence from his/her neighborhood. Usually, a person who has more than one personality in one body is influenced by something within that person’s self. Trauma is sometimes stated as the major cause for this phenomenon. Trauma mostly makes people feel hurt; therefore people usually try to find a way to avoid the pain of trauma. Actually, inside human mind, there are protections which have been added to recover from the pain of trauma. According to Sigmund Freud in his psychoanalysis theory, this kind of protection is named as defense mechanism (Heller 67).
Defense mechanism protects human mind from any kind of problems which might cause unpleasant feelings in human mind. People use defense mechanism when they cannot handle the problem in their mind. There are certain forms of defense mechanism based on psychoanalysis such as denial, repression, projection, sublimation, etc. The function of those is to help people solving the problem that attacks their mind (Heller 68 – 70). By using defense mechanism, people hope that all problems inside their mind can be solved. No one wants to experience trauma in their life. However, people are unable to avoid them. Moreover, trauma indirectly can disrupt the development of human mind. In serious condition, trauma can affect the personality. Even though there have been defense mechanisms, it does not guarantee if trauma might not broke the personality. Defense mechanism only helps a person to cope with the trauma but it does not erase it from the person’s life. There is a condition whereby defense mechanism affects a mind disorder to occur in someone’s life. That someone suffers from multiple personality disorder as the result from defense mechanism that someone has chosen.
Speaking of trauma that is causing mind disorder to occur in someone’s life, there is a movie which describes this phenomenon. The movie is entitled Hide and Seek, starring Robert de Niro and Dakota Fanning as the characters. The film is directed by John Polson and released in 2005 by 20th Century Fox. This film was a box office in 2005. This movie gets some awards such as MTV movie award for best female actor, Dakota Fanning and several nominations such as best horror in the Golden Trailer Awards. John Polson also receives some awards in the event, Australian Film Institute for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in the film The Boys and the Cannes Film Festival awards (Internet movie database webpage).
In this movie, John Polson has successfully brought the visualization of how a man tries to cope with the trauma that soon brings him into a psychological phenomenon. He soon suffers from personality disorder in the form of the emergence of multiple personality disorder. This condition does not appear only in this movie but there are also some movies which have almost similar topic such as Secret Window and The Silence of the Lambs. However, this movie is chosen because according to the writer, this movie has an interesting way in portraying multiple personality disorder as the main theme unlike the others. The director is smart enough to emerge viewers’ curiosity to find out the causes behind main character’s multiple personality disorder. On the other side, the director maintains a good suspense throughout the film about the characterization of Charlie. John Polson is capable to make Charlie as the result of the main character’s defense mechanism belongs to either real or unreal character. He can visualize and combine the characterization about Charlie between those two conditions. All along the film, the audience gets to anticipate about the entity of this suspicious character. Moreover, with the advancement of the movie, the curiosity of the audience is going to be answered.
This movie actually tells about the life of a psychologist named Dr. Callaway (Robert de Niro) and his daughter Emily (Dakota Fanning). Both of them had experienced a psychological problem during their life. The problem emerges when Dr. Callaway and his daughter move to a new place after certain unwanted accident occurs in their life. Hoping to get better condition at a new place, they do not know if something more shocking is going to happen soon. In the new place, Dr. Callaway discovers that he already suffers from personality disorder specifically on multiple personality disorder.
In this movie, repression is chosen as the main character’s defense mechanism. Repression is the operation by which the subject repels and keeps at a distance from consciousness representations (thoughts, images, memories) that are disagreeable because they are incompatible with the ego. Repression is the privileged mode of defense against the instincts. What Dr. Callaway represses inside his mind later influences and creates something that he never realizes before. It creates a well-being named Charlie. Charlie actually is the result of the main character’s repression to cope with his trauma. His trauma mainly is influenced by his wife’s extramarital affair. It brings him into certain condition that he does not want to accept. And because he cannot deal with such that condition, he represses every detail about it inside his mind.
As the time goes by, Charlie as Dr. Callaway’s multiple personality disorder takes over control Dr. Callaway’s body to kill his wife in the middle of night. What makes Charlie takes over body control is influenced by the anger feeling that does not be released out from the mind. Charlie makes it as if it is a case of suicide. Charlie represents something that Dr. Callaway cannot capable to show in real life. This is because Charlie belongs to extrovert type of person that has opposite with Dr. Callaway’s original personality. While being Charlie, Dr. Callaway can do anything which in real world he cannot do such as being close to his daughter. The phenomenon which happens in Dr. Callaway’s life can be considered as personality disorder. To be precise, Dr. Callaway’s personality disorder is named multiple personality disorder.
Multiple personality disorder generally shows up in conjunction with a spectrum of other disorders such as post traumatic stress disorder, suicidal behavior, and eating disorders, and is therefore more difficult than one might anticipate diagnosing. Charlie shows up when Dr. Callaway gets a dream which reminds him about his wife extramarital affair. This dream considers as Dr. Callaway’s post stress traumatic disorder. Generally, multiple personality disorders have influenced by trauma and it would be stored in mind. Sometimes, this stored memory later can become dangerous indirectly because it later brings the person to do violence to satisfy the revenge feeling. In Dr. Callaway’s case, Dr. Callaway’s split personality influences him to do some violence. Dr. Callaway’s split personality does some violence not only to other people but also to himself. Dr. Callaway split personality tries to dominate Dr. Callaway’s mind. Soon, Dr. Callaway’s split personality is successfully dominating his mind along with the death of his original personality.
John Polson visualizes this kind of reality in this movie in an interesting method. Audiences are brought into a condition whereby Dr. Callaway’s family do not realizes it before. They are entering and going to play kind of game called hide and seek to search for the clues of the problems offer. Charlie in this movie is the main key to reveal what happens to Dr. Callaway’s family and his past life. John Polson has made the characterization about Charlie between real and unreal to bring viewers curiosity in order to make this movie becomes interesting.