1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.
2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.
Has anything ever happened to you that was so strange that if it had been a scene in a movie, people would have said it was too far-fetched? Sometimes truth is stranger than anything people could make up. Stranger than Fiction is a film based on this idea. Mason and Marni both like the movie, but they each understood it differently.
1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.
2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.
Marni: So, I saw Stranger than Fiction the other day.
Mason: Yeah, uh-hm.
Marni: Have you seen it?
Mason: I did. I came to it really late.
Marni: So you missed some of it?
Mason: No, no, no. I just mean like, it had been in the theaters for a long time.
Marni: Oh I see, I see, I see.
Mason: What did you think?
Marni: I really liked it. I actually, I thought it was great to see Will Ferrell in a different something…
Mason: ...something a little more mellow?
Mason: Not being a 40-year-old frat boy.
Mason: I completely agree. But I…Emma Thompson was great too.
Marni: She was, and Dustin Hoffman.
Mason: Queen Latifah I could have done without.
Marni: Really? I like her.
Mason: I don’t…I mean, she wasn’t bad. I just don’t really need Queen Latifah.
Marni: I like her. I like her acting. I think it’s great to see her…very personal.
Marni: It was a very interesting idea, I agree. Just the idea of someone narrating your life.
Mason: It almost felt like a Charlie Kaufman sort of thing.
Marni: It did, I can see that.
Marni: Kinda melancholy?
Mason: I think a little bit, yeah. There’s that kind of act of the film where Will Ferrell’s obviously trying to not die and you don’t know how that’s gonna pan out.
Marni: Well it seemed to have this, you know…It’s about sort of changing your fate. If you’re meant to die and sort of how you…Did you not think that?
Mason: I guess I didn’t think about it.
Marni and Mason liked to watch Will Ferrell play a more serious roll than he usually does. They liked watching him in Stranger than Fiction better than Old School, in which he acted like a 40-year-old frat boy. Mason and Marni also liked Emma Thompson and Dustin Hoffman. Marni liked Queen Latifah’s performance, but Mason is not a fan of hers.
Marni and Mason think the idea of a movie about someone narrating a life is interesting. They compare Stranger than Fiction to films by Charlie Kaufman, a writer known for strange movies.
Mason thought the movie was sad, while Marni didn’t. She thought it was about changing your fate. Mason didn’t think about that.
What’s the most unbelievable, stranger-than-fiction thing that has happened to you? Did you tell people about it? Did they believe you?