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8 Secrets to Writing a Film Critique

When studying in college, young people face a huge variety of different assignments. Some of the most common ones include essays, research papers, and similar tasks. But then, there are also other, more infrequent types of assignments that often tend to cause lots of headaches for students. And one of such assignment types is a film critique.

In a nutshell, a film critique (more often addressed as a movie review) is a type of academic paper that requires students to watch an assigned movie and write a compelling analysis of what they’ve watched. Doing such an assignment, you have to do much more than simply express your enjoyment or dissatisfaction. Instead, you need to leverage your research skills and critical thinking in order to create a  thorough assessment of the particular film and the elements inherent in it.

Writing a compelling paper like this can be a real challenge. Therefore, if you start thinking “I need WritePaper to write my paper for me,” don’t feel ashamed of this. After all, sometimes it is much better to delegate your tasks in order to get a high grade. But, if you decide to do it on your own, this article will tell you about the eight secrets to writing a brilliant film critique. Let’s dive in!


1. Watch the Movie

Though books are generally better than movies, this is not the case when you can avoid watching the assigned film. On the contrary, you can’t write a good review without watching it at least once. But, ideally, you should play it at least 2-3 times to make sure that you don’t miss out on even the tiniest details.

So, the very first tip we have for you is to take your time to watch the film you are going to analyze in your paper at least a couple of times.

2. Take Notes and Make an Outline

While watching the assigned movie for the very first time it is better to have 100% of your focus on what is going on on the screen. However, when you will play it the second and subsequent times, don’t hesitate to take notes on everything that seems important. This hack will help you save lots of time later. So, don’t neglect it.

Later, when you are ready, organize the notes you have taken, as well as your own ideas and thoughts in a clear and detailed outline. Be sure to plan everything you want to discuss in your paper. This way you will also save plenty of time and, also, ensure that you don’t miss any important details.

3. Analyze Different Elements Thoroughly

Often, when working on such assignments students make one common mistake – they make their film critiques sound like a simple overview of the plot. However, you need to know that there should be much more than that!

While analyzing a particular piece, you have to pay attention not only to the plot, but also additional elements, such as:

  • Tone;
  • Cinematography;
  • Acting;
  • Music and sound, etc.

Delving deeper into these and other technical and artistic features of the movie will help you conduct a more thorough analysis. So, don’t skip this step, especially if you are hoping to get a high grade!

4. Draw in Your Readers From the Start

Movie reviews are much different from traditional essays. Respectively, they require a different approach to writing them. However, there still is one common feature that must be present in all types of assignments – it is a hook. Long story short, a hook is a sentence or phrase aimed at drawing in the readers from the first line. Its goal is to capture attention, engage, and urge readers to keep reading. And you need to have one in your film critique!

Create an attention-grabbing first line that would engage your readers. For this purpose, you can use a quote, question, or an engaging fact that drives attention. For this particular task, you can also use a comparison, expert opinion, or other interesting background information to hook your audience.


5. State Your Opinion Clearly

When writing a movie review, students need to analyze the elements of the film and confirm their statements with real examples. But this doesn’t mean that there will be no space for your personal opinion. On the contrary, you need to express your opinion from watching a particular film. And you have to do this early on.

Ideally, give a clear and well-established opinion in the introduction of your paper. There is no need to delve deep into details in the introduction. But you also shouldn’t leave your readers guessing whether you liked the movie or not.

6. Come Up With a Clear Thesis Statement

Based on your analysis, you have to come up with a concise but clear thesis statement and give it at the end of your introductory clause. A thesis statement will basically serve as a central idea of your paper and will add a sense of a real film critique.

7. Always Support Your Claims With Evidence

When you get to writing the body part of your paper and stating your key opinions, claims, and ideas, don’t forget that it is crucial to support them with actual evidence.

Use examples and evidence from specific scenes, leverage expert opinions, and use other opportunities to support your claims. That’s the part when you will be happy that you took notes while watching the film.

8. Read Examples

Finally, one more secret to creating a great film critique is reading the examples of such papers. By checking out a few samples, you will be able to see how such papers should be written and organized. Be sure that this will help you a lot!

The Bottom Line

Although writing a movie review can be pretty hard. It gets much easier when you have some actionable tips and a plan.

Using the steps and tips from this article, you should be able to cope with such assignments quicker and easier. So, don’t neglect the pieces of advice we shared with you here and leverage them to your success!


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