Writing a film review Achievement Standard 2.2
Writing a film review Films are an important part of our lives, both as the focus of social events and as texts produced by our culture. Films, like other media texts, are a means by which culture is both transmitted and shaped. Much of our talk about film is quite superficial but, as part of the conversations we are constantly engaged in, film reviews attempt to add some depth to the discussion.
Writing a film review Film reviews are intended to provide us with an opinion on the worth of the film so that we can make a decision about whether to view it or not. A well constructed review should provide some basic information about the plot, the characters and the actors, also offering a personal response to the film and making a reasoned recommendation to others.
Writing a film review Reviews vary widely. Some reviewers use a journalistic style. Others have a distinctive personal style and speak strongly in their own ‘voice’. Before you begin writing your own reviews you could read the reviews in a number of local and overseas newspapers and magazines. This will give you an idea of the range of approaches and styles used by reviewers.
Writing a film review Achievement 2.2 is a transactional writing standard worth 3 credits. For this task you will write a film review of about 500 words on Schindler’s List. The review will be suitable for publication in a school newspaper, with a readership of Year 12 students and your teacher.
Writing a film review You will be assessed on how well you: • express, develop and support your opinions about the film • your ability to use a writing style suitable to the task and audience • how well you organise your material • your accuracy in spelling, punctuation, grammar, syntax, paragraphing.
How to organise a review Introduction should include: • The title and director • The film genre • Write about three sentences describing where the film was set and what the film is about. Give some idea of what happens in the film without giving away all the details of the climax or ending. Your introduction could include your overall opinion of the film and may include an important quote.
How to organise a review Second paragraph should include: • Write briefly about the key storyline details. • Mention the names of the important characters [and the actors who play them-either in this paragraph or in the introduction]?
How to organise a review Third, Fourth and Fifth paragraphs include: • Three aspects of the film that stood out for you. • Write about different aspects of the film in separate paragraphs. Choose three aspects*. • In each paragraph, use one or two specific examples to support your comments.
How to organise a review Aspects* of the film to write about: • Music; sound effects • Filming; camerawork [cinematography] • Costumes; set • Acting
How to organise a review Conclusion should include: • Write about an important idea or theme that the film emphasised. • Give a final opinion of the film. Say whether you liked the film, whom you would recommend it to and why. Justify your comments. E.g. “I liked it because…” “If you are the sort of person who likes…”