Watching a movie can boost hormone levels, making men and women feel more romantic or more aggressive, U.S. researchers said Thursday.
Sentimental films such as “The Bridges of Madison County” caused levels of the hormone progesterone to rise by more than 10 percent in both men and women, the team at the University of Michigan found.
Women’s testosterone levels were unchanged during and after the Clint Eastwood movie about a love affair, while men’s testosterone levels fell.
“The Godfather Part II” aroused a different sort of passion. While watching the crime and action film, men with the highest levels of testosterone had them soar by as much as 30 percent more.
But men and women watching a documentary about the Amazon rain forest were unaffected, the study found.
“When you’re watching movies, your hormones are responding, not just your mind,” said Oliver Schultheiss, a psychology professor who led the study.
“If you want to learn about someone’s personality, look at their video collection,” added Schultheiss, who published his study in the journal Hormones and Behavior.