Movies can be a great way to learn English… but do you know how to talk about them? In the IELTS speaking exam, it is quite a common topic. Some of the questions may be very basic, but that doesn’t mean your answers must also be basic. In today’s lesson, I’m going to introduce some vocabulary to help you speak more fluently, as well as to give more developed answers.

We will look at genres (that means “kind of ____”) and adjectives to describe movies.


First, check out my new YouTube video about describing movies for the IELTS speaking exam. If you like it, please subscribe to my channel and I’ll try to post one new video every week. Let me know if there’s anything you want me to cover in future lessons.

What Questions to Prepare for

The topic of movies is most likely to come up in the speaking exam. It could theoretically appear in any part. You can prepare by practicing these questions:

Part One

  • Do you like to watch films?
  • How often do you go to a cinema or watch a movie?
  • What was the first film that you watched?
  • Do you prefer foreign films or local films?
  • What genre of movies do you enjoy most?
  • Which was the first movie that you watched?
  • Which genre of movies do you try to avoid?
  • What kind of movies did you like to watch when you were a child?
  • Has your taste in films changed as you’ve got older?

Part Two

Describe a film that you have recently seen. You should say:

  • what the film was
  • when and where you saw it
  • what the film was about

and explain how you felt about this film.

Describe your favourite movie. You should say:

  • What the film is about
  • Why you like it so much
  • What message the movie gives

Describe a book or a film that had a strong impact on you. You should say:

  • What was it
  • When you read or saw it
  • How it influenced you

And say if you liked it and why.

Part Three

  • Do old people and young people like watching the same kinds of films?
  • To what extent do you think films reflect real life?
  • Do you think people will continue to go to the cinema in the future?
  • Statistics show that visits to the cinema are up despite the availability of DVDs and online downloads. Why do you think this might be?
  • What kinds of films are popular in your country?
  • Why do you think some people prefer going to the cinema to watching films at home?
  • What’s the difference between the movies or your country and Hollywood movies?
  • What do you think of violent films?
  • Why do you think people like watching films?
  • Is cinema a popular form of entertainment in your country?
  • Do you think films have changed since you were a child? How?
  • As the technology for home viewing improves, do you think people will stop going to the cinema in future?


To answer the questions above, you need a basic grasp of movie vocabulary. However, it is also useful to be able to describe feelings as often the questions relate to how we react to movies. In the PPT below, I have prepared some useful vocabulary to help you learn to talk about movies. You should download this PPT and view it in Microsoft PowerPoint, as this will give you the best learning experience.