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    #1

    Shall we see / watch a movie?

    We say "Shall we see a movie?"when we are referring to the cinema. Would it be correct if I say "Shall we watch a movie?"

    Thanks.

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    #2

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Not merely correct, actually preferable! 'See' with 'movie' tends to occur mainly in the past tense, e.g.

    I saw a good movie yesterday.

    or the future

    We're going to see a movie tomorrow.

    but in other forms, including hortatives such as 'Shall we...?', 'watch' tends to be more common.

    In some cases, most notably the present progressive with real present reference, 'see' verges on unacceptable, thus

    A: What are you doing at the moment?
    B: I'm watching a movie.


    (rather than: ?...seeing...)

  1. AlexAD's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    The OALD says that the verb shall is getting more and more unpopular, even amongst the British where it originally appeared.
    I don't understand why learners continue using this verb

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    #4

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    I don't understand why learners continue using this verb.
    It's because 'Shall we watch a film?' does not mean the same as 'Will we watch a film?'

    Rover

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    #5

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexAD View Post
    The OALD says that the verb shall is getting more and more unpopular, even amongst the British where it originally appeared. I don't understand why learners continue using this verb
    The OALD says this of 'shall' with future reference. It then says, "In BrE shall is still used with I and we in questions or when you want to make a suggestion or offer". Learners use it because it is correct and natural in BrE.

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    #6

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    From the repy by Philo, can I conclude that if I ask my friend whether he wants to go to the cinema with me, I would have to ask "Shall we see a movie?" However, when my friend and I are in the cinema and the movie has started, then I say "We are watching a movie."

    Thanks.
    Last edited by Tan Elaine; 09-Feb-2012 at 18:02. Reason: replace 'from' with 'by'

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    #7

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    From the repy from Philo, can I conclude that if I ask my friend whether he wants to go to the cinema with me, I would have to ask "Shall we see a movie?". However, when my friend and I are in the cinema and the movie has started, then I say "We are watching a movie."
    I think if you turned to your friend and said 'We are watching a movie', he might feel that he didn't really need to be told this. philo's last example is more realistic.

    If my neighbour says to me, "Shall we see a movie this evening?" I assume that she is suggesting a trip to the cinema. If she says, "Shall we watch a movie this evening?" I assume that she is suggesting that we sit in front of my DVD player.

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    #8

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Thanks, 5JJ.

    Your explanation leaves me with no doubt regarding the topic. Many thanks.
    Last edited by Tan Elaine; 09-Feb-2012 at 11:33.

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    #9

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    It's because 'Shall we watch a film?' does not mean the same as 'Will we watch a film?'
    What would be the difference? I guess with 'shall' it is like a suggestion and 'will' is like asking have we decided to see a movie. Is that so?

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    #10

    Re: Shall we see / watch a movie?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexAD View Post
    The OALD says that the verb shall is getting more and more unpopular, even amongst the British where it originally appeared.
    I don't understand why learners continue using this verb
    It is alive and well in BrE in some uses.

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