Saturday, March 30, 2013

Bangkok Dangerous & Big Fish: Urban Violence

 I love the movie Big Fish, but Bangkok Dangerous is not a recommendation. These scenes are very nice, though, for the topic urban violence.

 I. Discuss these questions in pairs:

1. How safe is it to live in your neighborhood?

2. How do you compare your neighborhood to others in your city?

3. Is urban violence a problem where you live? Talk about it.

4. Have you ever been to a place where there is a lot of urban violence? How did you deal with it?:

5. Have you ever been a victim of urban violence? Would you like to talk about it?

6. What are the causes of urban violence?

7. What can be done to stop or reduce crime rates where you live?

II. Match the following urban crimes and their definitions.

1. Bank robbery

2. Robbery

3. Stalk

4. Sex Tourism

5. Mugging

6. Express Kidnapping

7. Kidnap

8. Malfeasance

9. Rape

10.  Drug dealing

11. Smuggle

12. Arson

13. Murder

14. Domestic Violence

 ( ) The victim is abducted, then forced to withdraw their own ransom from a bank or ATM. If all goes well, the victim is released afterwards, generally after having been relieved of all valuables on their person (and occasionally in their residence).

( ) Stealing money from a bank, usually with the use of weapons

( ) to attack a person in a public place and steal their money:

( )  the crime of intentionally starting a fire in order to damage or destroy something, especially a building

( ) the crime of intentionally killing a person

( ) an example of dishonest and illegal behaviour, especially by a person in authority

( ) behaviors used by one person in a relationship to control the other. Partners may be married or not married; heterosexual, gay, or lesbian; living together, separated or dating

( )  the crime of stealing from somewhere or someone

( )  to illegally follow and watch someone, usually a woman, over a period of time

( ) to force someone to have sex when they are unwilling, using violence or threatening behaviour

( ) to take things or people to or from a place secretly and often illegally

( ) when someone travels to another country for the purpose of paying to have sex, especially with children or under aged citizens

( ) when someone travels to another country for the purpose of paying to have sex, especially with children

( ) Selling forbidden drugs illegally

Answer key: 6, 1, 5, 12, 13, 8, 14, 2, 3, 9,  11, 4, 7, 10, 

III. Can you think of other urban crimes? What are they?

IV. Which of the crimes above is the most serious problem where you live? And which ones do you think are not recurrent in your neighborhood?

V. Watch the segment from the movie Bangkok Dangerous and discuss the questions.

1. Describe  the scene.

2. What urban crimes did you manage to see in the segment? How serious is this situation in Bangkok, accordingto the segment?

3. Do these crimes take place in your country too? How different is the situation in Bangkok and in your city?

4. What can the government do toprevent these crimes from happening?

VI. Watch the segment from the movie Big Fish and discuss the questions:

1. Describe the scene.

2. This scene takes place in the 50's. How different are bank robberies nowadays?

3. What should happen to the robber.

4. How professional is he?

5. How dangerous is he?

6. Have you ever experienced a situation like the ones in the segments? Talk about it.


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Lorax & The Bay: Activism

The Lorax is a great movie. Its message is constructive and inspiring. I used this scene to talk about activism. The Bay is a thriller and is advisable just for adults.

Activism is action on behalf of a cause, action that goes beyond what is conventional or routine. The action might be door-to-door canvassing, alternative radio, public meetings, rallies, or fasting. The cause might be women's rights, opposition to a factory, or world peace. Activism has played a major role in ending slavery, challenging dictatorships, protecting workers from exploitation, protecting the environment, promoting equality for women, opposing racism, and many other important issues. Activism can also be used for aims such as attacking minorities or promoting war.

There are many different forms of activism; "activism" isn't synonymous with "radical." Nor does activism mean violence or the destruction of property. Boycotting is a form of activism as are silent candlelight vigils. Gandhi was an activist as was Mother Teresa.

Work in pairs:

1. According to the information above, what are some ways one can be an activist?

2. What are some famous causes for activists?

3. What are other ways to be an activist in your neighborhood or city, for example?

4. Have you ever been an activist? Talk about it.

5. What are some activism victories you have have knowledge of. 

II. Watch the movie segment from the movie The Lorax and discuss the questions:

1. How is activism portrayed in the segment?

2. What is the cause defended by the main character?

3. How important is his cause?

4. Do you think he is an activist? List a few characteristics of an activist.

III. Watch the segment from the movie The Bay and discuss the questions.

1. How is activism portrayed in the segment?

2. What are the causes defended?

3. How important is the cause?

4. What are the consequences of this environmental issue?

5. Would you join the cause? Which side would you join?

6. What environmental consequences have already taken place and what do you think will probably happen next?



Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel: Misleading Ads

I simply love this movie. It was certainly one of 2012 best films. This scene is wonderful to talk about advertising and misleading ads.

False advertising, misleading advertising or deceptive advertising is the use of false or misleading statements in advertising. As advertising has the potential to persuade people into commercial transactions that they might otherwise avoid, many governments around the world use regulations to control false, deceptive or misleading advertising. "Truth" refers to essentially the same concept, that customers have the right to know what they are buying, and that all necessary information should be on the label.
False advertising, in the most blatant of contexts, is illegal in most countries. However, advertisers still find ways to deceive consumers in ways that are legal, or technically illegal but unenforceable.

 I. Discuss the questions:

 1. Have you ever purchased anything that did not correspond to what had been advertised or promised? Share this experience.

2. What do you do when you feel deceived by a product or store?

3. What do you do to be compensated for the damage?

4. How can certain companies mislead the consumer to buy their products?

5. What do your country laws say about misleading ads?

6. Misleading advertising occurs when a claim about a product or service is materially false or misleading, in an attempt to persuade the consumer to buy it. What should the consequences be to a company/product whose ads are misleading?

 II. Watch the segment form the movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and discuss the questions:

 1. What is being promised and what is being offered?

2. How misleading is the ad?

3. What would you do if you were one of those tourists?

4. What sort of punishment, if any, should the hotel owner receive? Explain your answer.

5. Would you like to go the Marigold Hotel? Why (not)?

6. Have you ever experienced anything similar when you traveled? Talk about it.


Friday, March 1, 2013

Madagascar 3: Life-Changing Events

This is a wonderful scene with a touching and inspiring message. It is a great to tool to help your students share moments or happenings that changed their lives or personality.

I. Work with a partner. Rank the events below from 1 to according to how drastically they can change someone's life. Make sure you explain your choices (1 not drastically at all / 5 very drastically)



Your teacher will dictate some events. Use a blank sheet of paper and divide it into 3 columns with the headings below. Write them down in in the column you believe applies to you. Don't show your answers to your peers. Then group up with a few partners, share and compare your list, and say why and how your life would change (have changes) under those circumstances.



- Getting married

- Having  a baby

- Moving to another city

- Changing schools

- Divorce

- Falling in love for the first time

- College

- Changing jobs

- Unemployment

- Suffering urban violence

- The first kiss

- Going to your favorite band (singer)'s concert

II. Work individually:

Write down 5 events that changed your life.

III. Work in groups.

Share your lists. Explain how/why each event changed your life, how difficult/fantastic/sad/scary/etc it was, and whatever you consider relevant.

IV. Watch the movie segment and answer the questions that follow. Read the questions before watching the segment.

1 - What events changed Vitaly's life? How and why did they change it?

2 - How did those events change his personality?

3 - What about the other characters? Have their lives changed too? Which events changed their lives?