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Why Is It Difficult to Understand Films in English?

July 26, 2018 , by Dr Julian Northbrook

Recently someone asked me:

“Why is it difficult to understand films in English?”

Good question.

Of course, there could be many reasons.

But the most common are —

(1) The method you use makes you think too much. If you’re thinking in your first language or about your words and grammar as you speak or listen to English, you’re doing something very, very wrong. A lot of people think because they don’t, say, speak well, they need to learn more grammar and vocabulary. But doing more of the same is actually making your problem worse. Keep doing the same thing, keep getting the same result, right?


Well, this’ll translate into not understanding things like films well too.


(2) You’ve not learned the language used in films.

Plain and simple.

You’ve learned the WRONG English.

This is by far the most common (and it’s true of any English you don’t understand or can’t speak well). I’ve done a lot of research on English learning materials such as textbooks, and the sad reality is that most of the language you learn in them isn’t actually that useful in the real world. In fact, Japanese secondary school textbooks are so different to real conversational English that it’s almost a different language altogether. Pretty sure this is true of other countries too.

But it isn’t just textbooks.

Other common mistakes people make is doing things like studying newspapers.

Now, that’s not a bad thing in and of itself…


But clearly it’s a waste of time if you want to understand films — which are mainly conversational, spoken language.

The question then is…

What’s the best way to learn? And WHAT should you learn?

All is revealed in my book, Master English FAST, where I take you by the sweaty hand and lead you step-by-simple-step through the English-improvement process.

If you’ve been trying to improve for years but aren’t seeing progress…

You’d do very well to grab yourself a copy.

And if you don’t think it’s the best book you’ve ever read for transforming your English?

Just send me an email to a full refund any time before (or after) you die.

Click here to claim your copy.


P.S. Printed copies of MEF are running low.

Because I’m planning to move to Ireland in less than two months from now, I won’t be getting them re-printed.

So you might want to claim your copy while we still have them.



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