Plan to Study Abroad? Here Are 6 Movies and TV Series You Should Watch to Get You Ready for The Experience
Studying abroad is a wonderful experience for all students. You get the chance to explore new cultures, meet new people and make plenty of memories that will stay with you for a lifetime. This has turned studying abroad into a global phenomenon, especially since now it is much easier to find a program that allows you to study for a semester or more in almost any country in the world.
Still, it is understandable that studying abroad can be a frightening experience as well. You will be landing in a foreign country, where people may or may not speak your language, all by yourself. It is a challenge indeed, but you need not be scared. Change is what drives us to improve, and an experience such as this one can bring you out of your comfort zone and make you realize you are capable of much more.
Movies are one of the best ways to prepare yourself for a new experience, as they reveal a glimpse of what to expect. This is true for studying abroad as well, which is why we have prepared a list of movies and TV series you must watch before you travel for your first semester overseas.
Get some popcorn ready, find the remote, and enjoy!
Street Food: Asia
This Netflix documentary will make you want to order food from basically all Asian restaurants in your town. Prepare to get immersed in the wonders of Asian cuisine as the documentary celebrates and brings forward the best street food around Asia.
During its nine episodes, you will be transported through the streets of countries such as Indonesia, Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, and South Korea, because what better way to understand a culture than through its food?
If you live in a country where Netflix is not available at all or content is restricted, remember that you can always use a VPN to bypass geoblockers. The same thing works if you use streaming devices such as Roku, but you will need to use a VPN that supports Roku devices.
Emily in Paris
Yet another TV series produced by Netflix, Emily in Paris, follows the experience of a social media marketing strategist named Emily, as she tries to adapt to her new job in Paris.
A bubbly and enthusiastic 20-something American, Emily receives an unexpected job opportunity that prompts her to leave her Chicago life for the streets of Paris. She is sent to the City of Love to bring an American point of view to a more traditional French marketing firm that was acquired by the company Emily works for.
While this TV series is not exactly about studying abroad, it offers a very interesting perspective on what it takes to move to a foreign city all by yourself. The protagonist has to face cultural clashes, language barriers and many other challenges as she explores work, friendship, and romance the French way.
Lost in Translation
The movie features Scarlet Johansson and Bill Murray and was directed by Sofia Coppola. Lost in Translation is inspired by Sofia Coppola's time spent in Tokyo and does an amazing job at capturing the feeling of loneliness when you are all by yourself in a big city that you can't really understand.
While the movie does not really sound like an advertisement for student life abroad, it manages to showcase the true magic of living in a place that is difficult to figure out. And what if, in all this beautiful confusion, you find someone you can potentially understand and love? Wouldn't this be a beautiful adventure?
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Woody Allen's films can sometimes be difficult to understand, but once you understand the magic of his movies, there is no going back. This movie will make you want to pack your bags and move to Barcelona, to explore a culture that is full of passion, free-thinkers, and adventure.
The movie begins with Vicky and Cristina, who decide to visit Barcelona for the summer. Here the women meet an artist, Juan Antonio, who shows them a different way of seeing the world. Vicky Cristina Barcelona is a movie that will make you cry, laugh, get mad, and definitely want to spend at least one semester in Barcelona.
The Social Network
Would there be any real movie top for students without mentioning The Social Network? The infamous movie that tells the story of how Facebook was created is not exactly about studying abroad, but it does a very good job at showing how hardship and seemingly bad decisions can result in positive outcomes.
When Mark Zuckerberg's girlfriend leaves him, he steals photos of girls from the college database and puts them on a website, asking college boys to rate these girls on their appearance. Despite the fact that he gets caught and put on academic probation, the website draws people's attention and develops into what we now know as Facebook. While Zuckerberg's example is not exactly the most positive one, it shows that success does not have to follow a traditional recipe and something good can happen when you least expect it.
Good Will Hunting
Good Will Hunting is a wholesome movie that is meant to help you realize the potential you have. It features Matt Damon as Will Hunting, a twenty-year-old genius who works as a janitor at MIT. Because Will has a brilliant mind, and when professor Gerald Lambeau leaves difficult mathematic problems on the blackboard to challenge his graduate students, the janitor solves the anonymously, surprising everyone.
When the professor posts a very difficult problem in order to find out who the genius is, Will solves it unknowingly of the Lambeau's plan and is caught by the professor late at night. Believing in Will's qualities, the professor is determined to help him realize his true potential.
This movie shows it's never too late to discover your talents, and when this happens, your true potential will get unlocked.