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See a Movie or Watch a Movie: Which is the Correct One?

See a Movie or Watch a Movie: Which is the Correct One? Probably you are one of those asking that question.

Often times I have seen many of my Nigerian brothers and sisters trying to ‘form posh’ by using the term ‘see a movie’ when in fact they wrong in most cases. Many heard their friends or people use the word ‘see a movie’ and they think it is a modern, ‘posh’ or ‘tush’ English against what they are used to; so they follow the trend.

See a Movie or Watch a Movie: Which is the Correct One?

Using ‘seeing a movie’ is not always right and not always wrong to use as well. It all depends on the context in which you are using it. So, you might be right while using it and you might as well be wrong. So, you need to learn the rules. How?

The subsequent paragraphs will be eye opener for you on when to use ‘see a movie’ or ‘watch a movie’ and ‘see a film’ or ‘see a movie’.

See a Movie or See a Film

First, you should note that ‘movie’ and ‘film’ means the same thing in this context. As ‘film’ is British English, while ‘movie’ is American English.

You should use ‘see a movie’ or ‘see a film’ when you go to a cinema or movie theatre. That is the simplest explanation to give. So, it can be said that when going or having gone to a movie theatre, you should use the phrase ‘see a movie’ or ‘see a film’. For instance:
  • This evening, I am seeing ‘Last Flight to Ondo’ at the SilverDove cinemas.
  • Do you want to go see the new Game of Thrones episode with me tonight?
  • I saw the movie yesterday at the cinema.
You can also ‘see a movie’ or ‘see a film’ at home. However, this is only when it is part of a broadcast schedule, and you only happen to ‘see’ it at that moment.

I believe with this little explanation, you should now know when to use ‘see a movie’ or ‘see a film’.

Differences between See a Movie or Watch a Film

Now you may ask: when should I use ‘watch a movie’ or watch a film’? You watch a movie when you view it at home (not necessarily your house – anywhere aside from a cinema or theatre). You don’t ‘see’ a movie when you are viewing it at home (aside from a scheduled broadcast by a TV channel).

Let’s put it in another way entirely. You ‘watch’ a movie or film when you are viewing it on your phone, laptop, desktop computer, DVD, NetFlix, YouTube, BlueRay, VCD, VHS etc. So, if you are viewing a movie from any of the devices, software and applications mentioned, you are ‘watching’ a movie. For instance:
  • My boyfriend came over last night and we watched a movie after dinner
  • I want to watch ‘Wedding Party’ tonight on YouTube
  • I watched ‘Up North’ on my android this morning
Now I believe with this little insight, you know just about when to use ‘watch a movie’ or ‘watch a film’.

So, you don’t have to commit a grammatical blunder by trying to impress with a supposed ‘posh’ grammar that is incorrect. Try as much as you can to note the difference and when to use ‘see a movie’ and ‘see a movie’ or ‘watch a movie and ‘see a film’ or ‘watch a film’.

Thank you for your time. I would be happy if you drop a comment and share this post.


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