For College Students: How to Write an Effective Movie Review

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It’s fun to watch films. Any student would be thrilled to find out they’d be trading the regular class lecture for the day, for a film showing. However, that excitement might suddenly fade away once they are told that they are to come up with a movie review afterward.

Writing movie reviews is like assessing products you have bought. You share with others how you find your purchase. In short, there is no right nor wrong answers. Everything is subjective as it’s coming from your point of view. Here are tips you can use to writing effective movie reviews.

Focus on the film, set aside worries. You’d get distracted while watching should youet the movie review task get on your nerves. Watch as though you were not assigned any project. The less concerns you have, the more you will be able to concentrate on the film, and the better you will it. Don’t pressure yourself to absorbing everything on first screening. Rent a copy instead, and see the film again.

Take note of aspects to look into. Here are factors to analyze when writing film reviews:

Technical side (lighting, graphic effects, musical score, video editing). Don’t fret if you don’t have much background on the technical side of filmmaking. You need not point out the mistakes of the production staff and tell how they can correct it. Express your thoughts rather about how elements such as the music and lighting effects were used in the film.

For instance, did the soundtrack help develop the mood in the scene, or did it only mislead viewers? Do you feel the horror film could have been more effective if they shot scenes with lights on?

Were the switching of scenes logical, or confusing? Do the graphic effects seem mediocre to you that they fail sustain your interest or are spectacular enough, that you felt you were part of the scene?

– Storyline. Readers want to hear about your insights hoping to gather valuable information, before they see the film themselves. Don’t narrate the entire story. Provide a synopsis or a brief overview of the plot. Cut out the ending, and let the viewers see it for themselves.

Do you think there were unnecessary parts that could have been omitted? Were the lines effective or boring?

– Characters. Name the main characters in the story. Did they give justice to their roles? Do you feel like some characters are more appropriate for another role? If the film is a sequel, and some characters were changed, you can also compare the performance of the previous actors or actresses with the current.

Avoid reading other reviews. There’s nothing wrong with reading other reviews. The downside is that you might adopt the same insights inadvertently. If you would like to learn more about the structure of film reviews, go for reviews of other films (from the same genre) instead of reading reviews for the same film.

Observe constructive criticism. You can’t hate the character just because he’s wearing the same haircut as your ex- lover. Take out all your biases. Imagine you are reviewing custom term papers. You would not cite the mistakes you saw just so to insult or offend the writer. You are rather helping that person improve his work. The same goes when writing movie reviews, you cannot just enumerate the negative aspects you have seen in the film. You have to back up your arguments.

Lastly, note that it does not have to be always positive.You do not have to be the goody-goody type,  and say that the movie was great when it fact you were disappointed with it. Be true to yourself but at the same time, always be ready to support your claims.


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