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How to Write a Film Review

An overview of how to write a film review for grade 11 English Communication.
by

Cosette Heazlewood

on 23 October 2012

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Transcript of How to Write a Film Review

Why Write them and How? Writing a Film Review What is a Film Review? A film review gives an overview of a specified film.
It gives the reader an idea of what the film being reviewed is about and whether it would be a worthwhile film to watch.
A film review will inform the reader of the storyline as well as give the reviewer’s rating (usually a number of stars or a score out of ten). What to Do in a Film Review There are a few key points of what you need to try and cover in a film review. These will help you ensure that you have looked at all important features and have analysed your film properly. State and Support Your Opinion It is important that you give your opinion on the film – people read film reviews to get an understanding of whether or not others are enjoying that film.
Make sure whatever your opinion is, you support it. If you liked or disliked the film, say why. This will give others a clearer understanding of whether or not they’ll be likely to share your opinion. Target Your Review to Your Audience Think about who is likely to read your film review – where is it likely to appear (e.g. on a website, in a magazine etc)
Make sure your review is written to that audience (e.g. will it be read by teenagers, adults, girls, boys etc) and use language, figures of speech, phrases appropriate to that audience (no swearing please!) Avoid Spoilers Your audience is reading the review to see basically what the film you are reviewing is about.
Don’t put in any spoilers though! Assume no one wants to know the end of the movie before they see it.
You can hint at what happens in the movie (e.g. The twist at the end of the movie makes it worth watching). Judge the Story Make sure you evaluate the actual story of the film, not just the special effects, actors, music etc.
Are the character’s actions justified? Is there a reason for how they act?
Is there consistency with how the character’s behave throughout?
Does the story flow in a somewhat logical fashion? Rate the Actors Regardless of whether you like or dislike the actors in a film, your job here is to rate the way they have played their role.
Have they made the character seem plausible? Do you believe in the way the character behaves?
Have they made you feel something regarding the character (e.g. for a hero, do you like/support them?) Evaluate the Cinematography Look at the way the film is made and give that a rating (make sure it is justified!)
What special effects have been used? Do they add to the story?
Think about the background music. Does it fit?
Look at the film techniques we have discussed and evaluate whether or not they are effective in getting the message of the movie across. Key Elements A good film review should have five key elements. These are:
Credits
Plot
Characters
Vocabulary
Conclusion Credits Make sure at the start of your film review you discuss:
Title of the film and year it was made
Genre (e.g. fantasy, horror, comedy, drama…)
Director
Main actors Plot A brief background of the movie – what happens etc
You may chose to put in here the time and place the movie is set
Cultural context of the film
Any other interesting information relating to the plot (storyline) of the film. Characters Physical description
Psychological description (a brief summary of what type of person they are)
Any other relevant information – age, race, personal history, motivations for actions etc. Vocabulary Here you need to make sure the words you are writing are appropriate to a film review
Try to ensure your spelling, punctuation and grammar are spot on.
Use some of the film terms we have studied in class Conclusion Summarise your film review. Give it a rating (perhaps out of ten or on a level of one to five stars) Comparing Films in a Review For your assignment you will have to compare films. This means you will have to:
Look at the main elements of a film review for each film
For each key point, decide which film was more successful
Evaluate the target audience for each film and make that clear
Choose which film was your favourite and justify the reasons why to your readers. Homework
Write down the pros (good things) and cons (bad things) about each film. Use this to decide which was your favourite.
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