Learning English through Film

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Many people credit watching films and television with helping them to learn a foreign language.  While this is definitely feasible, catchphrases from popular films can also help those learning English or trying to assimilate to live in the United States.

How many times have you heard yourself say “I’ll be back” when departing from a friend?
What about “we’re not in Kansas anymore” when traveling or experiencing something new and different?
Have you ever introduced yourself jokingly using your last name first as in “Bond, James Bond”?
I’ve strung together three things on more than one occasion à la “lions and tigers and bears, oh my”!

Do you know which films these are from?  Do these turns of phrase really have any significant meaning?  Would you understand them if someone said them to you?

Our speech is peppered with words and phrases like these which non-native speakers might be baffled by.  But making a concerted effort to learn some of these, incorporate them into your vocabulary or, at the very least, understand what they mean can have a positive impact on one’s language experience.

Which film catchphrases do you find yourself using?  Are there any you don’t understand?  Have you ever had a positive or negative experience where a lack of understanding inhibited communication?