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Suggested Activities for Feature Films




Suitable Scenes



Partner viewing

(silent movie / sound off / non-verbal sequence; one partner watches, the other turns round)

  • Partners take it in turns to summarise scenes for each other / giving running commentaries
  • scenes with a fair amount of action but little dialogue
  • (descriptive)
  • viewing skills
  • communicative skills
Observe closely
  • Watch a scene and then answer questionnaire.
  • short scenes establishing setting
  • training viewing skills


  • Form groups in which the number of members corresponds with the number of characters in scene
  • Each member of a group takes on the part of one character and listens carefully to what s/he says
  • With the sound turned down each member speaks his/her part in the group
  • scenes containing dialogue consisting of simple and short utterances
  • Listening (+viewing) skills
  • Memory techniques
  • Vocabulary practice
  • pronunciation, intonation / inflection 


Silent viewing

(scene shown without sound)

  • Speculate on dialogue. / Say in simple and plain English what the characters try to say.
  • dialogues in which facial expression and gestures are easily decoded.
  • speculating, empathy
  • inferring speeches from facial expression and gestures


Directors intention

  • Use a worksheet specifying various camera angles and editing techniques.
  • Watch a scene and describe what effects these techniques can produce, e.g. suspense, shock, comic relief, titillation, anticipation, foreboding, revulsion, desire, anger, fear, contentment, indignation, suspicion surprise etc.
  • very short scenes in which lighting, camera angles and editing techniques are used to good effect
  • identifying techniques specific to the medium of film
  • viewing skills
  • analysing the way films work

Freeze frames

  • (press pause button at key moments) Comment on / explain what body language expresses in this situation.
  • scenes in which actions, not words, dominate.
  • viewing skills
  • empathy
  • communicating



  • What advice would you give to the character in the given situation?
  • Watch scene; comment on character’s behaviour; discuss possible outcome.
  • scenes in which the character(s) do not do as expected.
  • empathy
  • counselling

Role play

  • Each member of a group take the part of a character in the film and act out a scene not shown in the film (= gap-filling activity)
  • sequences which contain obvious gaps
  • communication skills



  • Write a text advertising the film.
  • Write a review for your local paper.


  • formal writing skills
  • creative writing skills
  1. All activities can be followed up with interviews, Hot Seat, debates and written tasks for homework. e.g. creative writing in the form of diary entries, letters [of complaint], profiles, newspaper reports, “kiss-and-tell”, obituary, memoirs, wanted poster, police reports, eye-witness report, speeches by attorneys for the defence / prosecution, extra scenes, etc.
  2. “People listen with two eyes and one ear” as the late Alistair Cooke put it. With viewing films, the visual signal is clearly the dominant and much more memorable one. Therefore, viewing, not listening, should be concentrated on.


Suggested Activities for Feature Films: Herunterladen [doc] [52 KB]