Volume 16 (2011) Pages 55-63
This study focuses on the meanings and usages of the future progressive by making use of data from various English movies. From the viewpoint of grammar teaching, the study discusses one core meaning-future activity in progress-and two derivational meanings-expectedness and politeness. With the help of various dialogs taken from movies like True Crime, City of Angels, Catch Me If You Can, The Terminal, and some others, the study proposes to separate the two derivational meanings from the core meaning; this is because the future progressive form typically does not retain the sense of progress when it conveys a derivational meaning. The discussion connects the two derivational meanings by shedding light on the common feature between them, that is, the non-focus on the subject's intention. The study also delves into the role of this non-focus on the subject's intention in inducing lessened pressure in questioning and thus assumes the meaning of politeness. A number of movie dialogs that have been used in the study will help illustrate the different meanings and usages of the target future expression. Suggestions for teaching this particular type of future expression using movie clips are also included in the closing statement.