Becoming fluent in a new language can feel quite daunting, especially when you’re trying to translate in your head first! Read on for some great tips to increase speed and pronunciation from instructor Giulia M…
I have been teaching Spanish, Italian, and English for a number of years. I am Italian, which means that two of the three of the languages I teach are not my native one. I understand the challenges students encounter while learning a new language since I’ve been through them myself.
In order to master a language and express our thoughts and emotions in an effective way, we need to start thinking in that language. This can be difficult to achieve, but with time, practice, and dedication, your thoughts will begin to originate in your new language.
I think the most powerful tools we have when learning a new language is our memory and our capacity to imitate. In fact, a big part of my learning process through the years has been when I watch movies in Spanish and memorize the dialogue. Much like with music, memorizing movie dialogue can help you learn pronunciation without having to think about the translation. The practice is useful when training yourself to think in a new language.
My Top 3 Spanish Movie Recommendations
There are so many great opportunities out there to watch movies in Spanish! I am a big fan of the Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar. His movies are very interesting and the actors speak Spanish beautifully. These are a few of his greatest titles.
A comedic drama, the film features ghosts, murder, and love as it details the relationships between three generations of women in Madrid.
All About My Mother
This emotional film follows a woman coping with her own personal tragedy as she makes new friends and reacquaints herself with an important character from her past.
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
Many complicated paths cross in a confusing jumble as a woman seeks to discover the reason her lover chose to leave.
Even More Spanish Movies to Watch
I recommend movies from Mexico like Y Tu Mamá También or Amores Perros to hear Spanish being spoken in a non-Spanish accent.
Chilean and Argentinean movies might be a little more challenging because the actors tend to speak quickly. I am a big fan of Ricardo Darín, an Argentinian actor. You may want to check him out if your Spanish is intermediate or advanced. I love El mismo amor, la misma lluvia, Son of the Bride, or Nine Queens.
Quick Tips for My Students
- Watch movies with English subtitles if you are a beginner, and in the language you are learning if you are intermediate or advanced. This way you will be able to connect the words you’re hearing with the words you’re seeing on the screen. This will help you memorize new words and work on pronunciation. Using two of your senses at once tremendously increases your learning ability.
- Whenever you don’t understand a word, concept, or grammatical structure, pause the movie and look it up in your textbook or a Spanish dictionary. This will be more accurate than using an online translator and the act of looking for something helps you learn.
I hope you enjoy these movies as much as I do! I promise that on top of having fun, your level of comfort while speaking Spanish will increase rapidly.
Readers, do you like to watch movies in Spanish? What are your favorites? Let us know in the comments!
Giulia M. teaches Spanish, Italian, singing, and guitar in Austin, TX and online. She is from Florence, Italy, and has been a tutor for the past 12 years. Learn more about Giulia here!
Photo by tonicito