Basically for seventy minutes, twice a week, for four weeks, I have around twelve students (4th-6th grade) and we watch a different American movie each week. We usually watch around 50 minutes of the video a day so one easily stretches out for both class periods. Their comprehension levels vary greatly so I tried to get movies that would appeal to all levels.
The first week I tried to be creative and get one of those terribly annoying children’s movies that they would love. Judy Moody and the Not So Bummer Summer.
Week two I wanted to get creative and share (and relive) my childhood so I downloaded episodes of Family Matters, Saved By The Bell, and Are You Afraid of the Dark. (I also strongly contemplated Full House and Hey Dude!) $40 to iTunes later, none of them had subtitles and they were useless. With about 5 minutes to spare, I remember that I had the movie Big in my laptop. (I always have a plan B.)
While Big is rated PG, I had no idea what I was in for. The smoking, the drinking, the sexual innuendos. (Thankfully those were all way over most of my students heads.) Add in the incredible foul mouths, including several b****, GD’s, and an f-bomb. While I was able to filter out the one boob grab that I remembered, there was no way I could filter out all of the cursing AND adult Tom Hanks jumping around in his skivvies. Oh my. I can only imagine what these children went home and told their parents I let them watch.
At one point in the movie when Josh and Billy first get to NYC and they are searching for a hotel, they pass a prostitute and a crazy homeless man on the street. The homeless man repeats the phrase, “I’m gonna kill the b****. I’m gonna kill her with a knife.” At the end of class one of my favorite students, one that is so wonderful I would actually adopt him if I could, came up to me with a smirkish grin. “I’m gonna kill her. I’m gonna kill her with a knife.”
Oh my God. What have I done?
This week, to err on the side of extreme caution, I was debating between Tangled, Who Framed Roger Rabbit (a personal favorite!), and Labyrinth. How cool would Labyrinth be?!?! I’ve been really opposed to showing Disney movies because it just seems to obvious. I wanted to offer them something that showed a little more culture or something that they haven’t seen already in Korea. After weighing heavily between Roger Rabbit and Labyrinth, I decided that unfortunately Roger Rabbit probably held a lot of the same bad qualities that Big did and I chose the Labyrinth. I thought the lack of human characters and actual talking would be helpful to them. And who doesn’t love David Bowie?
This is a long blog. I apologize.
I downloaded Labyrinth and it didn’t work so last minute I went with Tangled. (Told you…I always have a plan B.)
I think it helped that many of them were familiar with the movie ahead of time so they kind of understood what was being said, but I was amazed by how even with a language that they barely understand, they were captivated the whole time.
Oh, and I need suggestions for next week. Any ideas?