French Comprehension - Almost There?

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Brown Belt
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Re: French Comprehension - Almost There?

Postby garyb » Mon Aug 06, 2018 8:57 am

I hate to say it, but listening comprehension is something that always feels "almost there"! It's normal to think you pretty much understand everything, only to be thrown by a particular film or a fast conversation between natives or a regional accent and then realise you still have a long way to go. That's just life... Sounds like you're doing great though if you're picking out colloquial expressions from a series, so I'd just say keep up the work and consider the wise advice in the other replies.

TV series aren't always easier than films: many modern comedy films and most films from more than a couple of decades ago are far easier to follow than Braquo or Engrenages for example, and I'm saying this even after having watched all six seasons of the latter. As a generalisation it works, especially if you consider it by genre (gritty crime films can be even more challenging), and series do have the advantage of being longer.
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Orange Belt
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Re: French Comprehension - Almost There?

Postby issemiyaki » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:56 pm

Everyone, I can't thank you enough for the outpouring of support.

I'm going to take your advice and attack it some more.

I'm also working with an Italki tutor on listening comprehension and pronunciation.

I feel like I'm moving forward now.

Thanks a million. Hopefully the tips here will help others.
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White Belt
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Re: French Comprehension - Almost There?

Postby SM11 » Fri Aug 31, 2018 12:39 pm

issemiyaki wrote:Hi gang,

Really need your help on this one. (How do I keep improving? Keeping expanding my listening comprehension in French to understand high-level French.)

I feel like I've just had a breakthrough. And strangely enough, it comes after not having listened to French for about a month. I was in Europe, speaking Spanish and Italian, and then when I got home, I started listening to French again, and I noticed my ears seemed to be catching almost everything. So, I turned on a quick episode of Plus Belle La Vie. This has always been my nemesis, simply because of the speed, and the way they eat words. Well, I simply couldn't believe it. I was able to grab large chunks and phrases like:

- c'est pas le moment de lâcher tout
- on va trouver une solution
- on va vous aider
- il va s'en sortir

Now, moving forward do you think watching things like Plus Belle La Vie will continue to sharpen my ear?

Hi iseemiyaki !

Yeah of course you should continue, TV Shows are great to learn a language because you can easily watch them on a regular basis. I'm personally not a big fan of French series, but I know many people like Les Revenants ; Fais pas ci, fais pas ça ; or Un gars, une fille if you want some recommendations.

You know, something I was felt is that you can truly say that you understand a language only once you get the jokes native people make. I'm a French native, but I've been listening to English my whole life by watching movies in English or listening to songs in English. So that help me a lot, but I only started to consider myself fluent after highschool when I started to have foreign friends I could speak English without any difficulty.

I remember the first time my friend showed me a video of Michael McIntyre, I struggled a bit to understand him, but after sometime I started to more and more get the jokes, and I felt so happy haha.

You should try to listen to some French comedians, or Youtubers as well! It's really a great way to train.

The most famous comedian is probably Gad Elmaleh, you can find many one man show of him on youtube. You might find some in English as well cause he recently starded to play in the US, but he used to do a lot in France as well.
You can also find some funny sketches on the Jamel Comedy Club on youtube as well, which was created intially by comedian Jamel Debbouze to promote new young comedians in France. So that's a good way to practice really modern spoken French.
If you want my personal favorite, it would be Dieudonné, even though he's really controversial, he's still so funny.

For Youtubers, well it's quite easy to find them on internet. I think the most famous are probably Cyprien, Norman, Le Rire Jaune, Squeezie, Mister V... there are many ^^ The good thing is that you can often add French subtitles in their videos, so that can help you a lot.

Keep up the hard work !

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