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7 must-watch movies about public speaking

Reading time: 9 minutes
Sit comfortably and take popcorn, because we invite you to the world of movies that will help improve your performances in front of an audience.

Oscar-winning films, top actors and exciting plots: all this makes watching each of the films more enjoyable than most of the classes you have ever attended.

Lights, camera, action!

The King's Speech (2010)

"The king speaks!" - one of the most titled films in the history of cinema. In 2010, the film was nominated for 12 Oscars, 4 of which it received.

The film is based on real events. Albert was the youngest son of the king and had no claims to the crown. But his older brother abdicated. It would seem that this may be good news for some, but Albert (when he became King, took the name George VI) suffered from terrible nervous stuttering. This defect prevented him from speaking, and the king must do so almost every day. So he seeks help from speech therapist Lionel Logue. The doctor helps him to improve his diction, but his methods are too unusual.

How the film will help in public speaking:

This film teaches how to overcome the fear of public speaking and improve articulation.

To do this, there are special exercises that help to dispel fear, focus on speech and improve your own style: twisting the tongue, monologue exercises, conversations in front of a mirror. Also, try to put on headphones, turn on the music and record your speech. This will help you hear your true sound.

There are also special movements that need to be used directly during performances. For example, rolling back and forth on the feet. This will help you focus on your speech and get rid of your feelings.

Dead Poets Society (1989)

Such a masterpiece of cinema could not pass by this selection. Robin Williams played English language and literature teacher John Keating, who works at a preparatory school in Welton, Vermont.

In his classes, students read poems, standing at desks, pull out sheets from books and most importantly - begin to fall in love with English poetry.

The most popular moment of the film is the scene where John Keating tells his students about "Carpe Diem", which translates from Latin as "catch the moment" or "live the day". He gives this instruction to all his students and hints that his teaching methods will be extraordinary and will be very different from the vague greyness and conservatism of the school.

How the film will help in public speaking:

The speech about "Carpe Diem" has become cult and is a top example of the so-called "Inspirational speech". It shows that listeners can be inspired without motivating cries. Instead of shouting, it will be better to look at the main message from different angles and find ways to convey it better.

"Carpe Diem" is an important guideline for the speaker, because every speech should arouse interest, convey the essence in full, do it as effectively as possible and at the moment.

The Great Debaters (2007)

The film is also based on real events and tells the story of an African American debate club team from Wiley College in the 1930s. The head of the club is Mr Melvin Tolson.

However, it is not always enough to express one's thoughts clearly and beautifully.

The main goal of Tolson and his team is to prepare for competition with opponents from Harvard University and to prove that African Americans have the right to study at universities with whites and study the same subjects. And we must not forget that in those days the southern states were rather cruel.

The viewing is adorned by the top cast: Denzel Washington (he also became the director of the film), Nate Parker, Forrest Whitaker and others. Oprah Winfrey became one of the producers.

How the film will help in public speaking:

This film will be very useful for those who are just starting to perform in public. The tape tells how to prepare for a speech in a short time, in what moments you should add emotion, how best to use metaphors and "strong phrases" - arguments that are conveyed in a clear literary form.

The tape will definitely help to add courage to the speech because it conveys the tension during the debate in detail.

Braveheart (1995)

This is a historical film about the life of a true national hero of Scotland. William Wallace was one of the commanders-in-chief in the first war for independence from England. The tape is filled with battles, the ringing of weapons and inspiring speeches.

The main role in the film was played by Mel Gibson. He put all his charisma into her. Each speech inspires the warriors and gives them the strength not to be afraid to lose their lives for Scotland.

How the film will help in public speaking:

If your performance needs additional emotional impact with some beautiful expressions that will inspire the audience, then "Braveheart" is a must-see movie. The movie will help to add to the speech impactful phrases that will motivate listeners to real action.

The protagonist's speech, in which he addresses his warriors, demonstrates that seemingly simple phrases can become powerful phraseological staples.

Fran Lebowitz in Public Speaking (2010)

Fran Lebowitz is an American writer, critic, actress and producer with an unconventional view of the world.

"Fran Lebowitz in Public Speaking" is a documentary made by Martin Scorsese, in which Fran Lebovitz tells her opinion on various social phenomena and problems.

How the film will help in public speaking:

Fran is an extremely talented speaker who is not ashamed and is not afraid to express her opinion.

The film will teach that every thought can be formulated with a creative approach. This is what will turn an ordinary speech into one that will be broken down into quotations. Here are some quotes from Lebowitz from the movie:
"Great people talk about ideas, average people talk about things, and small people talk about wine."
"Think before you speak. Read before you think."
"I believe in talking behind peoples' backs. That way, they hear it more than once."

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (2017)

Unlike previous films, "Amazing Mrs Meisel" is a series that tells how a housewife begins the path of a stand-up comedian.

Her first performance is spontaneous: after learning about her husband's betrayal, the heroine gets drunk and goes to a bar, where there is a stage for performances by stand-up comedians. She herself did not expect that self-irony would cause such resonance among the audience and this performance would even attract the attention of the producer.

How the film will help in public speaking:

The whole series is a continuous speech in front of the audience, full of jokes. So if you want to add humor to your performance, we recommend watching the series.

The performances of the main character from episode to episode show what situations the speaker can get into. A good example of one of them: a difficult audience during a performance in Las Vegas.

Larry Crowne (2011)

A film starring Tom Hanks. He portrayed Larry Crown, a former sailor who now works as a manager for a large company. He got fired due to a lack of education. On the advice of a friend, he entered the university. There he meets the amazing professor of public speaking Mercedes Teno (played by Julia Roberts).

How the film will help in public speaking:

In class, Mercedes tells many interesting techniques that will help improve your performance. For example the practice of improvisational performances. Outline a topic that you can say exactly: "Tell us about what you know how to do or about your previous work. It's even better if you present to someone close to you to practice in front of an audience."

You will also understand how to properly accent the speech for quality visual contact with the audience.

We have shared with you a small part of those films that will help improve your public speaking. We hope you find a lot of useful information and inspiration in them.

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