Sunday, September 28, 2008

English Vocabulary in the Movies

CAT MBA English vocabulary

Will Turner: We're gonna steal a ship. That ship?
Jack Sparrow: Commandeer. We're gonna commandeer that ship. Nautical term.

While you are looking for answers to your MBA preparation towards the education industry here are some vocabulary delights from the entertainment industry. It is surprising how a movie endears itself to you through its cleverly-crafted dialogues and well-thought-out characters. The above dialogue, taken from the movie “The Pirates of the Caribbean” featured a dirty-looking well-spoken pirate named Jack Sparrow (brilliantly played by Johnny Depp) who spoke precise and vocabulary-rich English, better than any other character in the movie:

Murtogg: What's your name?
Jack Sparrow: Smith or Smithy.
Mullroy: What's your purpose in Port Royal, Mr. Smith?
Jack Sparrow: Well, then, I confess. It's my intention to commandeer one of these ships, pick up a crew in Tortuga, raid, pillage, plunder, and otherwise pilfer my weasly black guts out.

As a connoisseur of movies, I am used to paying strict attention to their dialogues. I can even sort movie dialogues in many categories and one of my favorite categories is the “vocabulary dialogues”. If you thought Jack Sparrow had a good vocabulary, know that he is nothing but protoplasm compared with the masked character “V” (magnificently played by Hugo Weaving) in the movie “V for Vendetta”. Here it is, V at his best:

CAT MBA English Vocabulary

Evey: Who are you?
V: Who? Who is but the form following the function of "what", and what I am is a man in a mask.
Evey: Well I can see that.
V: Of course you can. I'm not questioning your powers of observation, I'm merely remarking upon the paradox of asking a masked man who he is.
Evey: Oh...right.
V: But on this most auspicious of nights, permit me then, in lieu of the more commonplace sobriquet, to suggest the character of this dramatis personæ.
V: VoilĂ ! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain by the vicissitudes of fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is a vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished. However, this valorous visitation of a bygone vexation stands vivified, and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin vanguarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition. The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous. Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose, so let me simply add that it's my very good honour to meet you, and you may call me V.
Evey: Are you like… a crazy person?

No he wasn’t crazy. I bet he was a walking Webster’s dictionary. But the movie is worth watching for anyone who loves the language or wants to develop a taste for it. Watching movies is a great way to develop your skills in the language. First, you subconsciously get used to many words. Second, you develop a feel for the language- tongue and ears. Third, if you’re a person looking forward to enhancing your conversational skills, you cannot escape English movies. They give you the biggest skill required to become master of the language- thinking in English. And many a times, great movies have really thought-provoking dialogues. Here is one from the movie “The Incredible Shrinking Man”

CAT MBA English Vocabulary

Scott Carey: So close, the infinitesimal and the infinite. But suddenly, I knew they were really the two ends of the same concept. The unbelievably small and the unbelievably vast eventually meet, like the closing of a gigantic circle. I looked up, as if somehow I would grasp the heavens ... the universe ... worlds beyond number ... God's silver tapestry spread across the night. And in that moment, I knew the answer to the riddle of the infinite. I had thought in terms of Man's own limited dimension. I had presumed upon Nature. That existence begins and ends is Man's conception, not Nature's. And I felt my body dwindling, melting, becoming nothing. My fears melted away, and in their place came -- acceptance. All this vast majesty of creation -- it had to mean something. And then I meant something too. Yes, smaller than the smallest, I meant something too. To God, there is no zero. I STILL EXIST!

And if you are still with me, here is my final offering in the dialogue category, an exchange of words from “The Matrix Reloaded”-

CAT MBA English Vocabulary

The Architect: Hello, Neo.

Neo: Who are you?

The Architect: I am the Architect. I created the matrix. I've been waiting for you. You have many questions, and although the process has altered your consciousness, you remain irrevocably human. Ergo, some of my answers you will understand, and some of them you will not. Concordantly, while your first question may be the most pertinent, you may or may not realize it is also irrelevant.

Neo: Why am I here?

The Architect: Your life is the sum of a remainder of an unbalanced equation inherent to the programming of the matrix. You are the eventuality of an anomaly, which despite my sincerest efforts I have been unable to eliminate from what is otherwise a harmony of mathematical precision. While it remains a burden to sedulously avoid it, it is not unexpected, and thus not beyond a measure of control. Which has led you, inexorably, here.

Neo: You haven't answered my question.

The Architect: Quite right. Interesting. That was quicker than the others.

The Architect: The matrix is older than you know. I prefer counting from the emergence of one integral anomaly to the emergence of the next, in which case this is the sixth version.

Neo: There are only two possible explanations: either no one told me, or no one knows.

The Architect: Precisely. As you are undoubtedly gathering, the anomaly's systemic, creating fluctuations in even the most simplistic equations.

Neo: Choice. The problem is choice.

The Architect: The first matrix I designed was quite naturally perfect, it was a work of art, flawless, sublime. A triumph equaled only by its monumental failure. The inevitability of its doom is as apparent to me now as a consequence of the imperfection inherent in every human being, thus I redesigned it based on your history to more accurately reflect the varying grotesqueries of your nature. However, I was again frustrated by failure. I have since come to understand that the answer eluded me because it required a lesser mind, or perhaps a mind less bound by the parameters of perfection. Thus, the answer was stumbled upon by another, an intuitive program, initially created to investigate certain aspects of the human psyche. If I am the father of the matrix, she would undoubtedly be its mother.

And here’s an exercise for you guys- find out the meaning of all the difficult words in this article. Maybe you will realize that the entertainment industry has something to offer after all. While you are sweating it out for your CAT preparation, do go and watch some great movies. It will do you good.

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