How To Write Great Movie Reviews For
Your Entertainment Website
by Tamika Johnson
If you have an entertainment website then youre
always looking for fresh, new, fun and interesting material
to keep your readers coming back for more. Movie reviews
are a great way to do that. People always want to know
what someone else thinks about the movie they want to
see and they will scour the web to look for these opinions.
Now you could syndicate another sites reviews, but
why do that? You want your readers to be loyal to you
and your site and honestly, they want to hear what you
have to say and what you think. If youre thinking
you havent the foggiest idea on how to write fun,
compelling movie reviews, then think again. Im going
to tell you all you need to know.
1. Actively Watch the Movie Yes, I recognize
that movie watching is a passive activity. Watching a
movie isnt something you do, it is something that
happens to you. However, if you want to write good reviews
you have to learn to look at movies with a critical eye.
This means you need to pay attention to everything and
I mean Everything. Notice how the actors are placed in
each shot, the setting, the camera angles, even the music.
All of these elements play a role in the story that is
trying to be told and are important to talk about if you
want to write the compelling sort of reviews that your
readers will stop by your site each week to read. .
2. Take Copious Notes No, I dont expect
you to sit in a theatre with pen and pad or laptop in
hand. But I do expect you to take solid mental notes.
Information such as the actors names or who the
director was is easy to come across, but information like
camera shots, or plot devices is not, so you need to train
yourself not only to watch for that type of information
but also to remember it.
3. Summarize. Dont Spoil. This is important.
Nothing is worse then reading a review that tells the
whole movie from beginning to end and leaves nothing for
you to see. People want your opinion, not for you to spoil
the movie. A basic summation of the plot is all that is
necessary. From there you can talk about whether or not
the plot worked well or was the plot even a plot at all.
Let the details of the film be revealed when your readers
see the film, not when they read your review.
4. Critical Analysis is Key The difference
between a review anyone can write and a review people
will clamor to read is in how well you analyze the film.
Think about those papers you had to write for lit class
in college. The professor didnt want you to just
tell him what the book was about but wanted you to break
down the themes in the book and how they related to the
plot, the characters, etc. Well the same is true for a
movie review. No one wants a summary of events or the
plot. A good review will examine the themes or ideas the
movie raises and talk about how well or not so well the
movie executed those themes and ideas.
5. Point Out the Pros and the Cons No movie
is perfect and rarely is any movie all bad, so take the
time to talk about what the movies does well and what
it does not so well.
6. Be Original For some folk it is two thumbs
up, for others it is rotten tomatoes. Whatever you decide
you want your rating system to be, be original. Try to
find a hook that works for you. Just dont do something
that closely resembles someone else or youll just
seem like a bad copy of the original.
Follow these steps and youll be writing the best
reviews the web has to offer and your readers will constantly
come back for more week in and week out. Happy writing.
© 2005 Tamika Johnson
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