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American Movies About College Life: Fact or Fiction?

American Movies About College Life: Fact or Fiction? Let’s take a look at some American movies that should be required viewing before you study abroad, and separate fact from fiction regarding how they depict university life in the States.

Legally Blonde

The story of a fashion-obsessed sorority girl, Elle Woods, who goes to law school to win back her boyfriend, this is a light-hearted look at university life with some surprisingly deep moments. What is true about college life according to Legally Blonde is that it takes a whole lot of work to get into law school and to succeed once you’re there (study hard, like Elle, for those LSATS!). What’s not so true in this movie is the depiction of mean, judgmental cliques of students who exclude others based on their looks. That’s so high school! .

The Social Network

This movie is about moody, unlikeable genius, Mark Zuckerberg, who supposedly invented the social platform that would later become Facebook, while studying at Harvard. What is true about college life according to The Social Network is that anything is possible in a creative academic setting like university. You can even invent Facebook! What’s not so true in this movie is that college is full of Harvard geniuses inventing social media platforms. Most of us are just doing our best to pass algebra!

Pitch Perfect

This movie is about Beca, a reluctant college student who would rather move to California and become a music producer than go to school. However, as a student, her perspective changes when she joins an all-female a cappella singing group. What is true about college life according to Pitch Perfect is that sometimes our parents, like main character Beca’s, have a big influence on the decisions we make in college. What’s not so true in this movie is that while college can be really fun, most of your time will not be spent singing in an extracurricular club with your best friends, but studying hard to ace your classes.

Good Will Hunting

This movie stars Matt Damon as Will, a quiet math genius who, with help from a professor and a therapist, goes from school janitor to unofficial student at the esteemed Boston tech university, MIT. What is true about college life according to Good Will Hunting is that personal problems can get in the way of your education if you don’t resolve them. What’s not so true in this movie is that although professors might meet you during office hours to help you improve your grade, few will help you get out of jail, like Will’s did!
Even though they get creative in depicting American university life, these five movies are still perfect cultural preparation for studying abroad in the U.S. Browse Pathways University partner locations across the United States by clicking here.

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