IELTS GT Test – Speaking Mock Test # 15
[The examiner asks the candidate about him/herself, his/her home, work or studies and other familiar topics.]
Q. Tell me about the most important festival in your country.
A. I come from England and Camp Wildfire is one of the most important and widely celebrated festivals in my country. As I have always participated in this festival with my friends, I find it very important to the English people. For four days of non-stop fun, this music festival-cum-adventure camp offers a truly wild ride and the spontaneous participation of people makes it the most significant festival in my country.
Q. What special food and activities are connected with this festival?
A. Camp Wildfire lasts for four days and it is an exciting summer camp for adults in England. The forest dining is a significant part of this festival and participants dine in the open space and different juices, drinks and vegetarian items dominate the menu.
Campfires, live music, parties, DJs, inspiring talks, cabarets, relaxing spa, axe throwing, archery, water slide, water rafting dining in the forests are some notable activities of this festival. My favourite one is the water rafting which involves building and sailing our own raft which is a truly adventurous venture.
Q. What do you most enjoy about it?
A. As I have said, my personal favourite is the activity related to building a raft and then driving it in the water. This is so far the most challenging task as building a raft takes patience and experience. Once it is built, the participants get a feeling of making something on their own. I have done this several times and I absolutely enjoy it.
Q. Do you think festivals are important for a country? [Why?]
A. Every festival has its special appeal and when it connects people from all around the country, it becomes a magnificent one. Festival brings people together and are a great occasion for us to enjoy and forget our stress and anxiety from our day to day life. It signifies the culture and history of a country and this is quite important I believe.
[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]
Describe a film or a TV programme which has made a strong impression on you.
You should say:
- what kind of film or TV programme it was, e.g. comedy
- when you saw the film or TV programme
- what the film or TV programme was about
and explain why this film or TV programme made such an impression on you.
Cue Card Answer:
I loved watching different comedy serials, but the one I really liked, probably the most, was the “Last of The Summer Wine”. Being considered as the longest running TV comedy series in the history of the United Kingdom, the comedy serial started its journey in 1973 and finished in 2010 with nearly 300 episodes of pure fun and entertainment to offer.
If I remember it correctly, I probably watched it for the first time in 2005 with three old men walking aimlessly and talking like some young boys in their late teens. Basically, it was a simple story of three old men who, in all essence, couldn’t be any younger in their hearts. One of the three “stooges” was Bill Owen, the shabbiest man from Yorkshire, who has only two passions in life: one is his ferret and the other is, of course, Nora Batty (the lady for whom he has a never-ending infatuation). The second man of the group was Norman Clegg who would always get himself into trouble, while trying to help the other two, by getting carried away with their crazy ideas and “evil” schemes. The third man, of course, of the trio was Foggy Dewhurst who always seemed to have a story ready to convince others to believe him as an old day war hero.
I think that the best thing about this comedy serial was the characters were just so surreal in their expressions and behaviour as if they didn’t really need to fake anything. Another fascinating aspect of this comic masterpiece was its “surprise elements” with which it was just impossible to predict what would happen next to keep us “glued” with the TV. Besides, I would always remember the background music which was just too perfectly in tune with the beautiful countryside surroundings to make it look like a “perfect getaway” site waiting to be explored. But, above all, the comedy serial will get a top class rating from me because of its sincere efforts to portray old men positively.
Discussion topics: People’s cinema-going habits nowadays
Q. Do you think the cinema has increased or decreased in popularity in recent years?
A. From my personal experience, I can say that movies have gained huge popularity in recent years but interestingly, the number of people who enjoy movies in a cinema hall or a movie theatre has decreased remarkably. Particularly in my country, people have large screen TVs, DVD players, Blue-ray video players, home theatres, the internet, YouTube, Netflix and so on and these technological advancements allow them to enjoy any movie they like staying at home. The number of movie-goers is steadily declining due to the influence of Hollywood movies and amenities to enjoy movies with family and friends at home.
Q. In your opinion, will this trend continue into the future?
A. I believe so. The overwhelming popularity of Netflix – a popular media streaming company that provides video on demand, outlines how people would enjoy movies at home rather than visiting a theatre in the future. Low-quality local movies often fail to attract discerning viewers who eventually switch to high-quality foreign movies. Since most of the movie theatres in my country offer local movies, a huge portion of movie-viewers is no longer interested in going to a theatre and this will continue in the coming days with fewer movie-goers.
Discussion topics: Making a film or TV drama of real/fictional events
Q. What are the advantages and disadvantages of making films of real-life events?
A. I believe real-life movies are entertaining and educational. These movies often deal with famous historical events and prominent figures from history. This is why they have many pedagogical aspects and are not forgotten as just another dull movie. Thus movies like ‘The Imitation Game’, ‘Escape from Alcatraz’, ‘Midnight Express’, Catch Me if You Can’, and ‘A Beautiful Mind’ which are based on real-life events will entertain viewers many years to come and would be remembered as great movies. For such movies, viewers have more to relate to and a realistic storyline. The producer and director already have a plot, script, actors in mind, and the settings which make things easier for them.
Among the downsides, when dealing with real-life events and famous people, producers need to secure lifetime rights, which is always tricky and costly. The producer, director, actor and actress are all under scrutiny to tell the closest-to-the-truth story and there are critics who make things harder for them. Finally, despite great stories, many such movies do not become box office hits as people already know the story and do not buy tickets to enjoy them.
Q. How important do you think it is for a film-maker to remain true to the original story?
A. I believe if a movie plot is taken from a real-life event, the movie producer should adhere to the original story as much as possible. Otherwise, the film would be highly criticised and face a backlash from the viewers who are well aware of the event. However, remaining true to the original story might be challenging sometimes as the audience already know the story. Using a highly engaging script, modern technology, skilled actors and having a talented director who has an excellent vision and can see the film from its conception through to its final product could nevertheless add some appeal to the movie which would make it worth enjoying despite being a known story.
Discussion topics: Censorship and the freedom of the film-maker/TV producer
Q. Should films and television be censored or should we be free to choose what we see?
A. I believe censorship makes sure a movie or a TV programme is suitable for the general audience. Without some sort of censorship, many cinemas and TV series would include terribly violent and offensive scenes which would ultimately diminish their quality and their acceptance to the family. The idea of freedom of expression in a movie varies from people to people and even from country to country. Thus a censorship panel can determine what is suitable for the audience and how much editing is required for a cinema to be released or for a programme to be broadcast on TV. This ensures a balance in the entertainment industry.
Furthermore, the young generation constitutes a major percentage of cinema and TV audience and they are often influenced by the movie they watch and by their favourite actors or actresses. If no censorship is in place and they are free to watch any movie or programme they want, we would end up having a society with more juvenile delinquency.
Q. How do you think censorship laws will change in the next 20 years?
A. I believe the censorship laws would become more rigid to eliminate violent and offensive scenes from a movie but would allow creative artists to express their viewpoints more freely in the future. Specifically, after 20 years, we will have more laws related to movie censorship and ordinary people would be allowed to express their views about movie censorship. By that time, many programmes would be released worldwide and we will have global censorship panels who would determine what TV programmes and movies are suitable for what countries.