How is watching movies or dramas a good way to improve spoken Chinese?
Yes, you will learn the words and expressions in situation, which will help you to improve your overall comprehension about how to use this or that phrase. There is subtitles on every Chinese TV serials on movies so you can even use it to check words in a dictionary. It will usually also give you good insights on how local people live and serials are the best topic for casual conversation.
Here are some practical advices from my own experience about learning from TV. Stick to one single TV serial so you will get used to the way actors talk and understand them better. You may also get more into the story which helps to sustain your attention. Watch online so you can rewind, pause, etc. When a scene looks more important, take your dictionary and look up the words you don ‘t know (write them down even). When you get tired, don ‘t bother : just watch the thing. It is OK if you don ‘t understand, just accept it and it will come with time.
The most challenging part may be to find some interesting enough to watch on Chinese TV. When I first arrived in China I watched all the episodes of The Legend of Bruce Lee, which was OK.
Good luck with your learning !
This text was originally published in quora.