1

They enjoyed picture last evening. They enjoyed themselves during summer vacation.

Enjoy is one of the verbs which takes reflexive pronoun with it when required. Reflexive pronoun is used when the subject of the verb is the received if the action. So in the first sentence why we haven't used reflexive pronoun with enjoy?

1

To enjoy oneself means to have a good time. When we use the verb ENJOY like this we don't mention the thing that gave us the feeling of enjoyment. The Object of the verb is the reflexive pronoun.

When we mention the thing that gives us the feeling of enjoyment, that thing becomes the grammatical Object of the verb. So if a film gave you a feeling of enjoyment, you can say I enjoyed that film. We don't use the reflexive pronoun when enjoy is used like this.

In the Original Poster's first example, we mention the thing that gave us the feeling of enjoyment. It's the picture. We don't need a reflexive pronoun here. In the second example, the speaker is just saying that we had a good time. He doesn't mention the thing that gave us the feeling of enjoyment, so we need a reflexive pronoun here.

0

You said it yourself: the reflexive pronoun is used when the subject of the verb receives the action; that is to say, when the subject is also the direct or indirect object. In the first example, "the picture" is the subject.

I think the source of the confusion might be that the enjoyment appears to accrue to the subject of the sentence, to "them." However, grammatical roles are fairly technical, and an object is not always the same as whatever is affected by the action of a verb.

I appreciate it.

Not:

I appreciate myself.

Notice how the actual source of enjoyment has been entirely obscured in the first sentence.

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