Watching Movies with Captions May Be the Best Entertainment Hack Ever

June 26, 2019 BY JACLYN LEDUC

We all have favorite movies that we’ve watched several (maybe hundreds of) times, but what if we told you there was a way to make those movies feel like new again? The answer lies in something as simple as watching those movies with captions.

Movies and Captions: The Perfect Pair

Let’s start out with a warm-up question: do you watch TV or movies with the captions on screen? If you said yes, then you’re ahead of the curve.

  

  

It turns out that switching on the closed captions (also known as subtitles, though there is a difference) for any type of video entertainment is a game changer. One website recently published an article which says that closed captions can make it feel like you’re watching your favorite movies for the very first time and makes the argument that you should watch movies with captions.

Captions and entertainment work together to create an elevated entertainment experience.

If right now you’re thinking that captions are distracting or that they take away from the cinematic effect, allow us to get a little scientific on you for a moment: Captions don’t distract from the content, they often enhance it. This is due to our brains being more responsive to content that we can both see and hear at the same time. The more senses that are being engaged, the more you can focus on and comprehend what you are watching.

One article notes that when the captions are on, “You’re not just reading the words. Nor are you just perusing the imagery. Your brain is synthesizing these two data sets: the written and the [visual].” This emphasizes the fact that captions and entertainment actually work together to create a cohesive, elevated entertainment experience.

Why Watching Movies with Captions Enhances the Viewing Experience

Captions were originally developed to make television, films, and other video content accessible to people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. However, anyone can use captions, and there are many benefits to watching movies with captions.

no sound

Watch movies in sound-sensitive environments.

Maybe the dog starts barking at the cat, or you have to turn the volume way down because your family member or roommate is asleep in the adjacent room. With captions, there’s no need to strain your ears just to hear the dialogue; you can read it right on the screen.

Stay focused and engaged.

We all tend to zone out now and then, and it’s become more common for people to scroll through their phones even while in the middle of watching films and television shows. As previously mentioned, captions help to keep you engaged since you’re utilizing both the visual and auditory senses.

Don’t miss a thing.

Captions also allow us to pick up on dialogue or sound effects that we might have otherwise missed, which happens more often than you think. Even films that you’ve seen dozens of times may reveal new lines to you with the help of closed captions, and you’ll be left wondering, “How could I have missed that?”

There’s no limit to which type of movies or TV shows you should watch with captions on.

Discover new music.

Finally, and this one’s for the movie soundtrack buffs, captions allow you to take note of catchy songs throughout the film. Typically, captions will write out both the name of the song and the artist that sings it. Often, captions will also write out the lyrics word-for-word which may be more revealing of the song’s meaning within the scene. Instead of scrambling to look up the name of the song on Google or with an app on your phone, just follow along with the captions.

Which Movies Should You Watch with Captions

There’s no limit to which type of movies or TV shows you should watch with captions on, but below we highlight some genres and types of entertainment that are particularly enhanced by captions.

Historical

We love historical films as much as the next person, but in truth, they can be a bit hard to follow. Before you travel back in time, turn on the captions. They’ll help you soldier through things like old English and the densest of dialogue.

Watch It with Captions

  • The King’s Speech

Light and Dense Dialogue

In some movies, the characters will talk your ear off. In other films, the lack of conversation is almost eerie. In both instances, captions help you to keep focus and catch all the critical information from the film.

multiple conversations

Light dialogue movies are sprinkled with just the slightest amount of conversation and rely more on visuals to tell a story. With these types of films, it can be easy to lose focus or get distracted by something else only to miss the very sparse dialogue that’s integral to the plot.

Watch It with Captions

  • A Quiet Place

Dense dialogue films are the exact opposite, and you may find yourself losing track of the constant, back-and-forth banter or length monologues between characters.

Watch It with Captions

  • Snatch

Multiple Story Lines

Television series and films featuring many characters and multiple storylines can become quite intricate and complicated, making it difficult to keep track of every detail.

Reading the captions will help you to remember the details, including names and essential conversations between characters. This way, when a callback occurs, you’ll know what’s going on exactly. Maybe you’ll even brag to your friends about your impeccable film analysis skills.

Watch It with Captionss

  • Game of Thrones

Action

explosion

Sometimes the sound effects in action movies tend to be monstrously loud, whereas talking scenes are so quiet that you wish the characters had megaphones. In cases like this, captions come in handy. Even if you’re not reading along with the captions for 100 percent of the film, it’s nice to have them there for those moments when you’d rather not try to guess what the characters are saying.

Watch It with Captions

  • The Matrix

Musicals

Do you ever wish you could join in and sing along with musical films, but you just don’t know the words? With captions, you can turn musicals into your own sing-a-long experience. So, turn on those captions and sing your heart out.

Watch It with Captions

  • Grease

Foreign

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This may go without saying, but unless you fluently speak the language spoken in a foreign film, then you’re going to want to turn on the subtitles or closed captions. However, even for foreign films and series where the cast speaks in English, the accents can still be so thick that you find yourself rewinding every other minute, struggling to capture what the characters are saying.

Watch It with Captions

  • Outlander

Reality TV

We don’t know what it is about reality TV shows, but there’s just something about them that gets people hooked and keeps them watching season after season.

Closed captions and reality TV are a great pair since there are often several people speaking at once, talking loudly, or talking over each other, making it difficult to follow along with conversations.
If you don’t want to miss a second of this week’s drama – be sure to grab your remote and hit that CC button.

Watch It with Captions

  • The Great British Bake-off

The fun doesn’t end here! 🎉 Find out which movies to watch with audio description.

10 movies to watch with Audio Description

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