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127 Hours
127 Hours

Learn how to use gerunds and infinitives.

Date: Apr 13 2011

Themes: Hobbies, Sports

Grammar: Gerunds vs. Infinitives


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Humans have a powerful survival instinct. This means that in moments of crisis, we can do incredible things. Things we never would have thought we could do.

The new movie 127 Hours tells the true story of a thrill-seeker who got trapped in a canyon with his arm stuck under a heavy rock. In order to escape, he had to do the unimaginable: cut off his own arm.

Marni recently saw 127 Hours and she was amazed by what the main character was able to do to survive. Hear her and Mason talk about this incredible real-life story.


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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.





Marni:  Mason, I recently saw the film 127 Hours.

Mason:  Oh yeah, is that the one with James Franco?

Marni:  Yes, and it’s a true story. Are you familiar with the storyline?

Mason:  Well it’s the…that’s the one that he cuts his arm off, right?

Marni:  Yes. The story is incredibly compelling, and it really got me thinking about what I would have done in that situation, or what kind of drastic measures would a person take to survive. Because he’s trapped down in this cavern, nobody can hear him, nobody knows where he is, and his arm is pinned.

Mason:  Now, how long was he down there before he was like, OK, this is what I have to do.

Marni:  So 127 hours is a total of five days, roughly, around there. It’s incredible that he survived, but he clearly was determined to. I just was thinking, in that situation, I probably would have just given up. I don’t think I could ever do that to myself. But then, you know, the humans are just…we want to survive, right? Most of us.

Mason:  Yeah. I don’t think…I don’t know that I could actually say what I would do in that case. Like you probably think you would do one thing, but when you’ve been trapped for three days in a cave or whatever, you might do something different.

Marni:  Yeah.


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Marni saw the movie 127 Hours. She couldn’t believe the true story about a man who has to cut off his own arm in order to survive. She isn’t sure she’d be able to do something so drastic if she were in that situation.

Mason thinks that it’s too hard to say what you would be able to do to survive. People have a strong instinct to survive. They often manage to do things that seem impossible when they really have to in order to protect their lives or the lives of their loved ones.

Have you ever done anything extreme that you never imagined you’d be able to do?



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Viet Nam

It’s really amazing how people can survive in such a situation!

06:56 AM Aug 29 2014 |



Russian Federation

The  movie is compelling. I worried about that thrill-seeker very much. But for me the most impressing moment there is at the beginning , before the main events, when he jumps into the lake from a cliff again and again.  Really, I would like to try the same too.

Although I like to see such kind of movies, it is difficult for me to imagine myself in situation like that, and to think what I would do to survive.

05:52 PM Nov 16 2013 |


Viet Nam

Nope, I have never in this situation between death and live to choice. But I am totally agree with Mason. It hard to say.

Because, in my country history, many people have done unimaginable things. That is why we are Vietnamese can win the American and France and China and Japan war to be independent now day.

Unfortunately, We fight good but we are not good in making the development our country.

04:39 AM Apr 18 2011 |

anahid goddess

Iran, Islamic Republic Of

I dont like to think about  that I have done anything extreme . But I will not give up easily .

05:17 PM Apr 16 2011 |

2 people like this




The first time I heard about this movie I thought "For what reason someone should go in a place like that alone with nobody who knows where you are…" but if I have to image what I would do in the same situation…well, probably I would try everything to get out of the cave, and only in the end I would cut off my arm.

06:01 PM Apr 13 2011 |



I have never faced any extreme situation like that in the movie and I have never done anything extreme as well. So, it's hard to say what I would be able to do to survive.

But I'm sure that I wouldn't give up easily.

04:49 PM Apr 13 2011 |

1 person likes this




i thing if i were him … i would do the same thing in order to survive …

of course i'll prefer to life with one hand instead of dying with my two hands :DD … but i'll wait as long as i can for someone to help me first … but if nobody comes i'll cut my hand :))) 

03:17 PM Apr 13 2011 |




 Given up is not an option, his arm or his life, the survival instinct is prevalent not only in humans but animals as well.

02:18 PM Apr 13 2011 |

1 person likes this




Actually I just did one the last summer. What I did, which everybody believed was unimaginable compared to my capacity, I swum in ocean 2 kilometer and it took me about 2 hours!.  The truth is I never used to go for swimming and I never was a good swimmer. I it was always my dream to increase my capacity in order to swim and keep myself float in the water for a reasonable time which I then believed should be few hours. What happen was that I received an email which gave me information about an upcoming ocean swimming race and I was encouraged to take the chance. At first, I was reluctant to attend but finally I decided that this is the moment. I enrolled for the race and chose, for my own surprise!, 2KM grade. I have to confess, before that I had never swum in the ocean for more that 50 meters. I planned to exercise and do some pool swimming and I only had 2 months. Eventually, in that my biggest day, I successfully finished the 2km race in the pacific ocean and got to the shore. The race was in Sydney and the event was called Cole Classic. In that event about 5000 people participated. The experience was beautiful and I really enjoyed it. But for succeeding I required to put myself to the limit in order to finish the line but it made me to believe we, human beings, are capable of accomplishing everything, only if we focus on it and insist on our goals. 

10:11 AM Apr 13 2011 |

2 people like this




Not really. I think people like me will never go to that canyon, so we won't cut our own arm either. If you get the guts getting there alone, maybe you also get the guts cutting off your arm.

07:24 AM Apr 13 2011 |




As for me, I have never extreme experience like what the movie is and if the would be happened, I'll make a drastic move and be able to survive and i hope it will not happen and I will never give up and I'm determine to survive for my love ones.

04:38 AM Apr 13 2011 |

1 person likes this




Humanistic o.O . Amaizing what some one can do for survive !!

04:36 AM Apr 13 2011 |


United States

This is a great movie to show your students to make them fell energized and that anything is possible if you completely put your mind, body and spirit.

01:30 AM Apr 13 2011 |



opening a book and studing is st i ounce thought i wouldn't be able to do

07:38 PM Apr 12 2011 |



NoI haven't done extreme that I have never imagine! İf I were this man who trapped in the cave,I couldn't cut off my arm.I would wait to die.I watched the movie.Movie was very good.

08:02 AM Apr 12 2011 |

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