MLL video: Parasite is the first non-English language film to win Best Picture at the Oscars!

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Lab team
February 10, 2020
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Parasite is the first non-English language film to win Best Picture at the Oscars!

The Oscars recognising this and other films such as Netflix’s Roma, has shone a spotlight on subtitled that might’ve dissuaded viewers from watching such rich and diverse foreign movies. As language lovers, we're beyond excited to see that the Academy and the Western film community are recognising the value that non-English movies bring to viewers. We were missing out on a world of talent, ideas, and entertainment. Watch our thoughts here.

How can movies help you study languages?
The Academy just confirmed a trend that was already evident to viewers. Seeing Netflix and Amazon investing in more arthouse foreign films that need subtitles, is making these films more engaging and complements the traditional way of learning a language. Movies and TV series give you an idea of the complexity of a language, its variety, and are also a geat way to familiarise with local culture. Watching foreign films, TV series and documentaries is way more realistic than simply textbook learning and is one of the best ways to absorb the language in real life. If you have studied with us, you know that we believe in a holistic approach to language learning made of many language resources. Watching Netflix is the new homework 😉.

What movies should you watch to learn a language?
This is a question that our tutors get a lot — what are the best movies to study Spanish/French/Italian? Where should I start?

If you're a beginner, subtitles are the way to go. The movie will feel less intimidating and you will actually enjoy it while learning more passively. On the other hand, advanced students should go subtitle-free or at least read them in the original language.

As for what titles are the best, well, watch the ones that pique your interest! If the topic of a documentary is something you're passionate about, you'll be way more likely to stick with it. And no matter whether you prefer sci-fi or romcoms, the important thing is that you enjoy the experience and keep using movies as a great language input.

Sure, Almodovar's movies in Spanish may be a bit more challenging for beginners than cartoons. But that's what we're here for. Ask your tutor to give you personalised advice on movies and TV shows that are right for your specific level.