Unanswered [14] | Urgent [0]
  

Home / Writing Feedback   % width Posts: 10

Toefl Question: Movies and books in a modern life


essay0405 7 / 16  
Sep 3, 2009   #1
Question: Movies and books can reflect the ideas and the spirit of a particular period. What have you learned about a place or its people from watching films or reading books? Use specific examples and details to support your response.

In modern life, people not only need to work for earning enough money but we also need to relax and watching movies and reading books are some of the best way for entertainment. You can also learn many things about life by doing this.

Movies and books can reflect the ideas and the spirit of a particular period. As you know, the Titanic movies is one of the most famous films. Everyone like watching because of its romance, beautiful love, and the most important reason is because it recalls about an event that the Titanic was sunk and many people died because of that, this event made the movie become very famous even before this movie was shown.

We also have a lot of documentary movies or books that are about historical events, famous people who have achieve a great work and many beautiful places all over the world. Through those, we can learn about cultures and traditions of other countries. We can also learn how to help people, what we have to do to live more beautifully. We know that this world needs our contributions and we're responsible for that.

Learning something that is interesting to you is easier than learning something that is boring. Because of that, while you are watching movies or reading books, you are relaxed but you also learn something that you need for life. It's one of the best way to enrich your knowledge and save time.

Therefore, the industry of making movies and publishing books is now developing. We can consider movies and books as the second world that is familiar to our life.
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Sep 3, 2009   #2
In modern life, people not only need to work for earning enough money but we also need to relax and watching movies and reading books are some of the best way for entertainment.

This is a run on sentence. Also, is it only in modern life that people need to relax as well as work? Haven't people always needed to do both? Haven't books been around for centuries? Resist the urge to make every essay about "modern life" or "modern society." Just answer the prompt.

Which, in fact, you do not do in this essay. Your essay is about the general benefits of reading books and watching movies. The prompt asks you "What have you learned about a place or its people from watching films or reading books?" and direct you to "Use specific examples and details to support your response." You have done neither of those things. You do mention one specific movie but do not say anything that you learned about a specific time or place.
OP essay0405 7 / 16  
Sep 3, 2009   #3
Thank you for your comment. I'll try to rewrite my essay to make it better.
dccb 1 / 10  
Sep 3, 2009   #4
I would like to add some pointers to what you have written, even though, as EF_Simone said, you need to answer the question the essay is asking.

-Keep homogeneous verb tense usage trough out a sentence:
"we also need to relax and watching movies and reading books" This should read as:
"we also need to relax, watch movies, and read books" or if you modify the structure of the sentence, you can use "relaxing, watching movies, and reading books," but do not mix verb tenses.

-Also, you cannot use because after reason, use that instead.
"The most important reason is because it recalls"This should read as:
"The most important reason is that it recalls"

If you are going for the TOEFL exam, a five-paragraph essay structure will do you good; there are tones of free websites with tutorials.
It would also help you to brush up on written language structure, also ready available on the web for free.
OP essay0405 7 / 16  
Sep 3, 2009   #5
I've rewrite my essay. Here it is:

Movies and books are common topic for everyone because we watch movies and read books everyday. Movies and books can reflect the ideas and the spirit of a particular period, so from that people can learn about life.

...
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Sep 3, 2009   #6
The first key to writing a successful TOEFL essay is answering the question. The question this prompt asks is: "What have you learned about a place or its people from watching films or reading books?" In this second try, you did write about two specific works, meeting the requirement to use specific examples, but you did not answer the question. Neither Robinson Crusoe nor Castle in the Sky taught you anything about a place and its people because neither of them is set in a real place.

What book or movie taught you something about a real place or the culture of the people who live there?
sung_tung 5 / 9  
Sep 3, 2009   #7
"Maybe you are not interested in reading books, but you might know the book named 'Robinson Crusoe'."
I think this sentence should be corrected: "If you are interested in reading books, you should know the book named 'Robinson Crusoe'.
dccb 1 / 10  
Sep 4, 2009   #8
It seems like you have watched the 1997 version of Titanic; ask yourself what three things have you learned on how did people behave in the early 1900s?
OP essay0405 7 / 16  
Sep 4, 2009   #9
Thanks for all of your helping. I'm trying to rewrite this essay. I hope that this one will be better. Actually, I don't often watch movies or read books, I just watch or read for a few minutes and often fall asleep. However, I'll try my best to write a good essay for that question. But can mention a film without its name, because sometimes I saw a movies maybe of Japanese or Chinese and I don't know its name in English.
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Sep 4, 2009   #10
Actually, I don't often watch movies or read books

So, this experience will maybe motivate you to read more often?

The main general principle that you should get from this is to always read the TOEFL question very carefully and to answer it exactly. If you just write an essay on the general topic of the question but do not answer the question exactly as it was phrased, you will score very low. The assumption will be that you do not read English well enough to understand the question properly.


Home / Writing Feedback / Toefl Question: Movies and books in a modern life