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Lesson 7: Task: Write a film review

movie review lesson plan high school

This is the lesson where you put everything together. We want you to write a review of a film.

Writing a Film Review

This is the lesson where you put everything together. We want you to write a review of a film. You will see two examples of film reviews which you can use to help you write your own review. When you’ve finished your review, post it in the comments section and read other participants reviews and tell them what you think. In lesson one we looked at film vocabulary, in lesson three we gave you some advice about using film to improve your English and gave two short reviews of films about football, in lesson four we focussed on the passive which is a common form to use when writing about films, and in lesson six we showed you some websites where you can read lots of film reviews. While you are writing your review, you can go back to these lessons for some help.

What should I include in my film review?

It's up to you! Here is a list of some common things that you see in film reviews. Have a look at the Bend It Like Beckham film review and match the five colours to the things in this list. Is there anything extra included in the review? Is there anything missing?

  • The film's title.
  • An eye-catching heading.
  • The genre (type of film). 
  • The audience. Who is the film for?
  • The director, main actors, when it was made, has it won any awards?
  • The plot. A brief summary that doesn't mention the ending!
  • Your opinion.
  • Your evaluation.

Film Review 1

Bend it like beckham – brilliant and funny.

How can I describe Bend It Like Beckham? If I had to choose a genre, I would say it’s a romantic comedy-drama sports film!

The film was made in 2002 and directed by Gurinder Chandha who is well-known for films which explore the lives of Indians living in the UK. 

The film is set in London and stars Jess (Parminder Naghra) , who is an 18-year-old girl with Indian parents. One of the main storylines is the tension between Jess, who loves football, and her parents, who don’t allow her to play. Jess’s friend and teammate, Jules, who is played by Keira Knightly (Pirates of the Caribbean) encourages Jess to play despite her parent's wishes. 

The film deals with serious social problems such as sexism and racism, but the film is very funny at the same time! The acting is very good and of course, there is a happy ending! Oh, and David Beckham is in the movie, but you must wait until the end for that! I would give Bend It Like Beckham four and a half stars out of five and definitely recommend you watch it!

Now, look at the second film review. Is it a good review ? What does it include? Is there anything missing?

Film Review 2

Fever pitch – funny, dramatic and a perfect finish.

I love football and I love films, so Fever Pitch was the perfect movie for me. It tells the story of a school teacher who is mad about his football club – Arsenal! The film was made in 1997 and is based on a best-selling book of the same name. The film has also been remade for American audiences based on baseball.

The main role is played by Colin Firth (Paul) one of the UK’s most famous actors. Paul falls in love with a new teacher (Sally) at his school during the 1989/90 football season, one of the most important seasons in Arsenal’s history. The plot follows the ups and downs of Paul’s romance with Sally and the fortunes of Paul’s football team. But who does he love more? Sally or Arsenal? You’ll have to watch the film to find out!

There are strong performances by Colin Firth and Ruth Gemmell (Sally) in this romantic comedy-drama. If you are a football fan you will love this film, but it definitely has a wider appeal, too! I will give it five-stars and not just because I’m an Arsenal fan!

Write a film review

Write a film review in the comments section below.

Write about a film you enjoyed or a film that you didn't like. It could be a recent film or a film that you watched a long time ago.

The film doesn't have to be about football.

Reply to other learners and tell them if you have seen the film. Did you like it? Do you agree with their opinions?

When you have finished, mark the page  complete  on the side of this page and go to the end of week quiz!

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movie review lesson plan high school

I would say that An Angel at my table is one of my top ten most favourite films. It’s a drama film which directed by Janet Campion and shot in 1990. The film is based on Janet Frame’s three autobiographies. Kerry Fox plays the role of Janet Frame, a famous New Zealander writer and poet. The film is about the life of Janet Frame who was a very clever child until, as a teenager, she was misdiagnosed with schizophrenia and sent to a mental institution……… The story takes place in Australia, New Zealand and the UK in the different parts of Janet’s life. It ’s a flawless masterpiece. The storyline is so beautiful and inspiring and Kerry Fox’s acting is just incredible. I was mesmerized by that shy, intelligent and lonely girl and could totally relate to her. Besides, his movie makes New -Zealand look like the most gorgeous place on earth Another thing I loved about Another thing I loved about the movie was the excellent music score.

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EG

The other side of the door-thriller

the other side of the door is a horror movie that was made in 2016-the stars is Sarah Wayne and Jeremy Sisto and it is directed by Johannes Roberts the movie is set in India and it tells the story of maria whose her son died in an accident and she blame herself because she is the one who caused this accident and therefore she is doing a spell ritual to bring her son back to life Or feel his presence which causes harm to her and her family

I love this film because the plot was interesting as it means don't try to life in past and accept the situation you are in trying to adapt.

That isn't a just horror movie but actually it is a movie Know the consequences of what you do so if you are fan of wisdom movie ,I recommend this movie to you, I give it four star of five Don't miss it .

movie review lesson plan high school

El Ruby House

El Ruby House is a comedy-drama Movie that was made in 2023. the stars are Kareem abdelaziz and Nour, and directed by Peter Mimi.

The movie is set in Boston and it tells the story of private family event gets leaked on social media, Ibrahim Al Ruby decides to live in a village with his wife and children, far from people and the pressure of modern life. After his younger brother, Ihab, convinces Ibrahim to go back to the city for some important paperwork, the family embarks on a trip full of surprises that is bound to change the lives of the "Rubies".

The film deals with serious social problems, but the film is very funny at the same time! The acting is very good and of course, there is a happy ending!, I love this movie because the plot was interesting. I am also a big fan of Kareem abdelaziz

I would give It four and a half stars out of five and definitely recommend you watch it!

Assel Aswad dramatic - comedian Aseel Aswad is a drama - comdey film. The film was made in 2010 . it tells the story of an Egyptian person (masry) he was live in America along his life .then came back home(Egypt).he surprised about deferent between the life in America VS Egypt. he discovered that deference when he dose some files in government interests school transportation . The main role is played by Ahmed Hilmy(masry) one of Egyptian famous actors share with Anaam Salosa ' Edward 'Lotfy Labib ' Emy Samir ghanim. The film directed by KHaled maray. I would give Asel Aswad four stars out of five and definitely recommend you watch it!

movie review lesson plan high school

Hatchi: a dog's tale It's a drama film The film was made in 2009 and directed by ( lasse hallstrom ) and the stars are (Richard Gere ) ,( Jason Alexander) and ( Joan Allen) The story is based on Barker who works as a professor and he goes to the university by the train And one day he found a little dog at the train station, he took it home with him and called it ( hatchi ) Then ( hatchi) grown up and it's attachment to the professor ( Barker ) increased, the dog used to drive the professor every day to the train station and wait until his return The dog was very popular with the people at the train station And on day the professor didn't come back to take ( hatchi) home with him So what's happened to the professor and hatchi ?!! Watch the film to know the end This is one of my favorites movies Definitely recommend you to watch it ❤️

Pride and prejudice It's a romance and drama film. It's directed by (Joe Wright) in 2005 the story is based on (Jane Austin's) novel. The film is set in United States . the stars Mr.Darcy (Matthew Macfady) and his best friend Bingley( Simon Woods) Jane (Rosamund Pike), Elizabeth (Keira Knightley),Mary (Talulah Riley),Kitty (Carey Mulligan)and Lydia Bennet (Jena Malone) . The story tells about Mr and Mrs Bennetts five unmarried daughters after the rich and eligible Mr . Darcy and his best friend Mr . Bingley have moved into their neighborhood. While Mr . Bingley takes an immediate liking to the eldest Bennet daughter Elizabeth ,Jane and Darcy has difficulty adapting to local society and repeatedly. You must wait until the end to know what will happen! I like Pride and prejudice and I would like to give Pride and prejudice eight and half stars out of ten and definitely recommend you to watch it ♡

Work it It’s dance comedy film that was made in 2020 . The stars Sabrina carpenter and Liza koshy and Jordan fisher , and it directed by Laura Terruso . The film talk about quinn Ackerman she is a nerd and she want to Join in college duke because was dreaming her like her father because father Quinn joined this college but she can’t because they won’t accept her , she has to do something different, so she will apply to a dance competition and be her team . But my favorite character is jake Taylor in this film . Watching a jake Taylor dance is very funny and fantastic. I recommend this film to watch it who wants to laugh and exciting watch this film , so go to see it with your friends. I give jake Taylor 5 stars because he deserve this 5 stars . Don’t miss it.

I agree with you ♡

movie review lesson plan high school

John Wick 3. It is an action film directed by Chad Stahelski and the cast includes Keonu Reeves and Scott ADKINS SET IN 2023. The plot is about Johnwick taking his fight against the high table global as he seeks out the most powerful players in the underworld. The performance of the cast was thrilling and keeps the audience on the edge of their seats from the beginning to the end. I would give it a four rating and strongly recommend others to watch it.

Ahmed00007's picture

John Wick 4. It is an action film directed by Chad Stahelski and the cast includes Keonu Reeves and Scott ADKINS SET IN 2023. The plot is about Johnwick taking his fight against the high table global as he seeks out the most powerful players in the underworld. The performance of the cast was thrilling and keeps the audience on the edge of their seats from the beginning to the end. I would give it a four rating and strongly recommend others to watch it.

IN

I would like to give a film review about 'Titanic.' It was written, directed and also produced by James Cameron. It is a genre of romance and drama. The film was made in 1997. It's about two characters falling in love during a voyage. The plot was remarkable and brilliant. It was first-rate and I would give it five stars and also strongly recommend those who missed this film to watch it.

DZ

I love the Long Shadow movie, an animated series, a comic series about the story of an orphan girl named Judy Abbott, who got a scholarship to Lincoln High School, by someone she doesn't know named John Smith, Judy called him the Long Shadow Owner, because she had never seen anything but his shadow . Her story contains sad clips, but she overcomes all misfortunes. Her story ends with a happy marriage with the owner of the long shadow.

Django Unchained-Action,romantic and comedy.

Django is a action movie and a one of the best movies have directed and it was made in 2012.The stars are Jamie Foxx (Django),Christoph Waltz (Dr.Schultz) and the infinite Leonardo Dicaprio(Candie) and it is directed by Tarantino.The story tells about Django the slave whose wife was kidnapped by Englishmen then Django try to find his wife with Dr.schultz.So can he find his wife ?

I was interested in this movie because the plot is wonderful and graphics is outstanding and i am a big fan of Dicaprio but my favorite characters in this movie is Dr.s schultz .

I think this movie is not for children because there is blood and screenshots +18. I recommend this movie to adults .I give the movie four stars Don`t miss it.

Enchanted - Real world and the animated world collide I am fond of princesses and fantasy world , so enchanted is my favourite film i would say it's animation adventure comedy family romance film it was made in 2007 at New York City it's related PG for some scary images and mild innuendo. It was produced by Alan menken and stephen schwartz and performed by Amy Adams and james marsden its story line is about the beautiful princess Giselle is banished by evil queen narissa from her magical land shocked by this strange new environment,but when Giselle begins to fall in love with a divorce lawyer, Can a storybook view of romance survive in the real world?. I think it's a great choice for a movie night. I would give it five stars.

Jumanji is an amazing adventure movie and its comedy at the same time that was made in2017. The stars are (dwayne Johnson)and (Karen Gillian) and it’s directed by (Jake Kasdan) while a group of teenagers were in detention at school one of them found a video game which took them inside it and they stuck at that video game until they complete the missions I am in love with this movie because it’s make me laugh and excited to watch the end This movie for children and adults so I recommend it for a family night. I give jumanji five stars

Mohamedyasser's picture

Marvel Age of Ultron Its my favourite film cause i like the gerne and from all marvel films its my favourite. i like the characters and i like the plot and everything that happends in the film

avenger is an amazing action superhero film that is made in 2012 in United Kingdom it is directed by Joss Whedon its cast including Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, and Jeremy Renner as the Avengers, alongside Tom Hiddleston, Stellan Skarsgård, and Samuel L. Jackson. i am abig fan of this film and i recommened the all to see this film

movie review lesson plan high school

Africano Africano is an amazing adventure, comedy movie I have ever seen. It was made in 2001.Ahmed El Sakka and Mona Zaki played the leading role, Hassan Hosny was in it. The movie was directed by Amr Arafa. It was set in South Africa and it tells the story of Badr who workes as a vet. His wish is tragically granted when his uncle who lives in Africa dies and Badr travels to get his inheritance as he meets his cousin Gamila. I love this movie because, the plot was interesting. I am also a big fan of Ahmed El Sakka. Hoever my favourite character in this movie is Gamila . Also the music is fantastic. I highly reccommend this movie, So go see it with your friends. I give it three stars, Do not miss it.

movie review lesson plan high school

Spider man is my favourite movie

My fav is marvel movies

yes that is a good movies company

World war Z is my favorite movie , It has been my favorite movie since I watched it , it's my favorite movie cause i love zombie movies and every one liked it ; The film was made in 2013 and the director is Marc Forstar He is a German film producer and screenwriter , The film won an Empire award. U.K .The film is set on U.S.A and the star is Brad pett (Gerry Lane), Former United Nations employee Gerry Lane traverses the world in a race against time to stop a zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments and threatens to destroy humanity itself. it is the best film i had watched it ever I would give it five stars and I recommend everyone to watch it!.

Spiderman no way home It's my favourite superhero and the actor who role the Peter parker is Tom Holland and the other actors played the role very well also i like the genre of this movie it's action. Finally, I think that this movie can watch it teenagers and adults but I don't think youngers can't watch it.

yes its a good one too

DE

Marvels: Endgame is my favorite movie, It has been my favorite movie since 2019, and it has been my favorite because everyone loved Avengers: Endgame, but it’s not just any other superhero flick. It’s actually the best film in the MCU. It’s emotionally resonant. Endgame has a sense of beauty behind all of the action and violence. At the center of the film, it really is a love story. Thor goes back to see his mother before she is murdered by the Dark Elves, Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) reconciles with his father, and Steve Rodgers reunites with his wife back in his original time.

movie review lesson plan high school

The equalizer the equalizer is a realistic action film, where Denzel Washington, plays Robert mccall , the film talks about how robert faked his death in order to live a quiet life, but when he sees a young woman being abused by a Russian gang, he comes out of his retirement to fight crime and reinforce justice, the movie is set in Salisbury, Hamilton, Chelsea, Haverhill, and Boston, Massachusetts and is directed by Antoine fuqua it was released in 2014 has an interesting story, the acting is fantastic, and the special effects are impeccable, to me this movie is perfect, 10/10, i recommend it to everyone, but be warned since it has a lot of violence

end game if you like action movies this movie will be perfect for you the film is talking about the marvel universe Thanos has come to the earth and he wants to take all of the infinity stones and destroy the world then the avengers came to kill him and they make many wars two on earth and one in the space the film was made in 2019 and directed by Anthony Russo The film stars are Robert Downey Jr(iron man) and Chris Evans(Captain America) I would give this film five stars because the film is very Interisting

haze khaled's picture

interstellar 2014 this is an amazing sci-fi movies that was made 2014.Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway & Jessica Chastain. And its director is Christopher Nolan. the movie revolves around the Earth when it becomes uninhabitable in the future, a farmer and ex-NASA pilot, Joseph Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), is tasked to pilot a spacecraft, along with a team of researchers, to find a new planet for humans. I love this movie because the poly is amazing. I'm also a big fan of Christopher Nolan's works. I recommend this movie to everyone I'm sur that you gonna love it, don't miss it

i had to watch it twice to understand the idea

WS

Twilight Saga

I loved this saga, I saw it many times and today in summer I saw it again and I can't get enough of it. I love the story, the characters and the villains, everything was well done. When I finished the saga for the first time, I did a lot of research on the characters, their lives, relationships etc. I saw a news that they will make a new movie based on Edwar Cullen's point of view, I hope they make it soon.

CZ

Mamma Mia! - Who is my father?

If you like musicals and the popular Swedish group ABBA, this is a perfect film for you. Dona is a single woman managing a small family hotel on a little Greek island. Her daughter, Sophie, is getting married and she decides to invite her father to the wedding. The tricky thing is that she doesn‘t know who her father is. The film was made in 2008 and directed by Phyllida Lloyd. It stars Meryl Streep (Donna), Amanda Seyfried (Sophie), Pierce Brosnan (Sam), Colin Firth (Harry) and Stellan Skarsgard (Bill). There is fabulous music, excellent acting and singing and a lot of funny scenes. The plot is funny on one side but there is a serious overtone. I would give Mamma Mia! five stars because I think the film has positive vibes and it is more important than anything else.

SE

Films title: Mission Impossible Fallout is an action movie and is for a person that like action and tension. The Director is Christoper Mcquarrie, the main actors is Tom Cruise,Henry Cavill , Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg and more. The film was made in 2018 and it has won Prizes. My little review is that it is nice, entertaining and it´s so nice to watch. The film is about after a mission After a mission to recover a deadly weapon goes wrong, IMF agent Ethan Hunt and his team are forced to work alongside CIA agent Augustus Walker as they must race against time to continue their assignment. When Lane escapes from prison, Hunt must do whatever it takes to capture him once more.

Heinzkolenko's picture

Hello, I'm at school and have to write answers, I think it's good

So I like what you wrote

I am going to talk about Frozen. I don´t like the most of films but i thinked that i wanted to take one that i hated the most, why i hate it is becuse they sing those bad songs all the time and its just annoying.

lolisosa's picture

The Twilight Saga, a franchise you've probably all heard of. But it is actually that good? Here's what I think:

The movies are based on the book series with the same name, written by Stephenie Meyer. I would describe them as your high school-dream books: you've got the romance, the rivalry, the drama, and an amazing story! What more could you ask for. In the first movie from 2008, we see Bella (Kristen Stweart), Edward (Robert Pattinson), and Jacob (Taylor Lautner) live out their triangle-drama just the way we imagined from the books we already know and love!

If you, like me, love watching a cheesy, teenage drama and would like to fall in love with your new favorite vampire family over and over again - I suggest you watch and/or read the amazing Twilight saga, written by the one and only Stephenie Meyer, brought to life by Melissa Rosenberg.

UA

The Bourne identity is really good action spy movie. The main actor Matt Damon is just perfect for his role. This movie is about a good-looking young man suffering from amnesia, trying to find out his identity. On the beginning we can see a fisherman on a boat spots a body floating … When they got him on board, the body turns out to be alive. The friendly fisherman rescued him, gave him some money to go to Switzerland, because he has a capsule embedded under his skin, contains the code to a Swiss bank account. He was welcome in that country, he took a lot of money despite lacking a name or any form of personal identification. Also, he finds several passports, one saying his name is Bourne. The problem was that he really wanted to know why he was in the sea, and his real name, because he noticed about himself that he is not like everyone else. He speaks several languages, has highly trained power observation and memory, know all the spy tricks and was perfect driver. In a fact he was a special agent, he was hired by special service to kill important political people. When he finds out who he really is, he decided to leave his job, because he was a good person, he did not want to kill anyone anymore. And of course, there was a girl, why helped him a lot and he was in love with her. In the end of that movie, he has found his girl Maria and decided to live with her a simple normal life… far away from his past life. I like that movie a lot it has everything. I would definitely recommend that movie.

fe_2789's picture

The book of life It is an animated film directed by Jorge Gutiérrez with a duration of 95 minutes, released in the United States in 2014. It is a legend-like story of two young men, Manolo and Joaquín, who live in a traditional Mexican town and compete for the love of María. Behind that bet are also two spirits, La Muerte and Xibalba, who will take part for each young person, tipping the balance for one of them to know who will conquer the sweet Maria? From that moment on, a very dizzying adventure begins that takes the viewer into the world of the living and the dead with fantastic colors and definition. It amazes so much level of detail and authenticity. The movie offers unique universes. The Book of Life is an entertaining animated film, suitable for children from the age of seven (more or less), it is a fairly elaborate film, with easy and simple content to digest. For me, the film also has authenticity, it is that although there is a stamp of the producer, it does not go beyond the creativity of the author.

US

I'm not a big fan of superhero films, but the movie Black Panther really caught my attention. It was directed by Ryan Coogler and it came out on February 16, 2018. The film is about a young man name T'Challa, play by the late Chadwick Boseman, who returns home to the African country of Wakanda to take his rightful place as king. But when he's tested by a sudden enemy, Erik Killmonger play by non other than the talented Michael B Jordan, he must resolved this conflict because the fate of Wakanda and the world is at risk. With that said, he must gather an army, the Dora Milaje(adore ones) and the lead Okye (Danai Gurria), his wife to be Nakia (Lupita Nyong'o) and his brilliant little sister Shuri(Letitia Wright) that must fight with him till the end to defeat their enemy and keep their country safe. Overall the movie was amazing. I like that it appreciated the cultures of blacks in the United States and African cultures. Also the actors and actresses put their heart, soul, mind and body into each of their roles. Last but not least, the customs changes and effects was flawless.

hsn's picture

Film title "Eddie the Eagle" Directed by Dexter Fletcher.This movie based on real life of British first ski-jumper Eddie Edwards. Film gives us an idea about the power of encouragement, dedication and passion. All the person should have a target and must try to pass barriers.Then "the light will appear at the end of the tunnel" In my opinion this movie must be watched by all the students who at the beggining of their life journey. Don't give up and try and try again. This is motto of this film.

GB

I learnt about the genre of film. props that characters use to make the movie realistic.

movie review lesson plan high school

Five feet apart Romance This film is a 2019,directed be Justin Baldony.The stars are Cole Sprouse,Geyly Lu Richardson,Emily Baldony. The movie tells about girl Stella,who was sick on cystic fibrosis.She met a guy Will.He was also ill.But they weren’t allowed to approach each other’s,because they could infecting deadly viruses. But they didn’t heed all the bons... This film is very interesting and exciting. I highly recommend watching this movie to everyone.This story won’t leave anyone indifferent.

The Theory of Everything Drama/melodrama/biography, 2014 This film directed by James Marsh. The stars are Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones. This movie is based on a book. This is the story of the life of the famous physicist Stephen Hoging. Stephen goes to university, where he meets Jane. She became his wife in the future. Then, he learns of his incurable illness. His friends and wife support him. Man tries to fight. They are born children and all are happy in the family. But his health is deteriorating. Stephen makes great discoveries in physics. He becomes known worldwide. This film is very moving and romantic. The most touches is the love of Steven and Jane. I recomend this film everyone because it's very interesting and good. It has strong points.

yacine's picture

my favourite film is THE DARK KNIGHT i think is action and drama and crime, itis the most brilliant movie made by nolan, it was awsom movie, full of shoking seens.

Skills: Writing a film review

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movie review lesson plan high school

Writing a Movie Review: Teaching Tips and Lesson Ideas

To me, there’s nothing more enjoyable as a middle school teacher than blending films into English language arts classes. I’m a real movie lover, and I find that a good film-based activity is the perfect way to engage students in work on essential ELA skills in the last few weeks of school.

Thanks to Netflix, Disney+, and other streaming services, our students have more access to films than people at any other time in history! But I’ve noticed that even with so much exposure to movies, students need quite a lot of guidance to view films critically and with intention. 

This is why I find an end-of-year film review project to be so useful in the ELA classroom. Most students are natural movie reviewers already. They always come in on Monday mornings buzzing about the movies they saw over the weekend!

With this in mind, I like to tap into their natural instincts to share what they love, and help them learn the step-by-step organizational skills for writing a film review in the process. Here’s how this looks in the classroom:

1. Show Students Film Review Examples

To begin, I like to lead a brief whole-class discussion where we chat about the difference between getting a recommendation from a friend and reading a professional movie review . During this discussion, I point out that there are some specific things that a movie reviewer considers, including cinematography, actors, lighting, and sound.

Once students have the basic idea, I like to show them several examples of film reviews in different formats. If your school receives a newspaper subscription, you could collect and save film reviews to share with your class. Or, you may prefer a more modern approach and search online! Written film reviews tend to follow a similar structure and provide students with a good understanding of what they need to include.

Because most students also enjoy video content, we spend time looking at YouTube reviews as well. I might be dating myself, but I like to show old clips of Siskel and Ebert, the famous “two thumbs up” reviewers from the ‘80s and ‘90s! What I especially enjoy about their style is that they don’t always agree, but their reviews are still effective and engaging.

2. Know Your Audience

As we wrap up this lesson, I ask students to consider the audience of each review. For example, is the review aimed at children, adults, or even a teen magazine? The target audience affects not only tone and style, but also impacts the focus of the review. For example, a teen magazine review might focus on the famous actors of the film. By contrast, a special effects magazine might provide insight into a particular element of the filmmaking process.

3. Teach How to Watch the Film

The next step is to teach students how to watch a film with purpose, rather than simply for pleasure! In an ideal situation, I recommend watching a film twice. The first time is to get an overall understanding of the plot, and then to consider the choices the director and actors made in creating the film.

In the classroom, I like to pause the film frequently and let my students jot down notes. While they are watching, I remind them to consider each scene with an observant eye. I ask:

  • What does the director choose to show (or not show)?
  • How do the actors convey emotion, depth, and intention through their movements, as well as their words? 

movie review lesson plan high school

4. Provide Common Vocabulary

As part of a film study, it’s important for students to be able to speak the “language” of movie making. After viewing the movie, I like to take some time to outline some key terms to help students write their reviews.

Words like blockbuster, avant-garde, disjointed, or uninspired can help elevate movie reviews in ELA from “friendly recommendations” to “review quality.” I find a printable list of useful writing terms is especially helpful. This is especially true if you want to avoid the “It was a good movie,” trap! 

Writing a Movie Review in ELA Activity Useful Writing Terms

5. Provide An Organizational Framework

When it comes to actually writing the review, I like to be quite specific in my instructions, breaking down the review into specific paragraphs .

For example, introductory paragraphs should start by engaging the reader with a strong opinion, thought-provoking statement, or even a quote to act as a “hook.” I like to remind students that the purpose of this paragraph is also to share some basic information about the film. This should include title, director, genre, and setting, as well as a brief plot overview. No spoilers, please!

Next, I have students plot out their paragraph about the main characters of the movie. I like to begin this process by having them reflect on the portrayal of the characters, and whether the actors are well-suited for their roles. As they evaluate the performances, middle school ELA students can support their opinions using evidence and examples from the film.

Writing a Movie Review in ELA Activity

Because film techniques can vary so much from movie to movie, I like to give quite a lot of freedom in the next paragraph. I ask students to consider the following film techniques and choose one to focus on in detail:

  • Camera work
  • Sound effects

After they have evaluated film techniques, it’s time for students to flex their ELA muscles and reflect on the overall theme of the movie. In their fourth paragraph, I ask them to consider how the director uses filming techniques, set design, characters, conflict, or other elements to express or develop this theme. I like to guide this paragraph by asking questions like:

  • Has the theme been developed effectively?
  • Does it have an impact on the viewer, a specific community, or the world?

Finally, it’s time to wrap up the review! In this final paragraph, students need to give the film a rating in whatever “system” they choose. Popular choices in my classroom include thumbs up, stars, or even popcorn kernels on a scale of one to five! As they justify their rating and provide their personal opinions, I also encourage the class to consider what type of person would enjoy the movie.

6. Give Prompting Questions

In my experience, prompting questions help students focus on key things to include in their ELA movie review. I like to remind my students that graphic organizers are a tool for working through their ideas. They don’t need to be filled out in complete sentences, but they provide a useful framework for structuring their review. 

Pre-Writing Planning for Writing a Movie Review

7. Make time For Peer Feedback & Editing

While students always resist the peer feedback and editing stage of the writing process, it really makes a difference in their overall quality of work.

Before they finalize their review, I have students work with a peer for a closer look at the grammatical and structural elements of their movie review. One way to do this is to follow the “three stars and a wish” format. In this activity, each student has to identify three positive things about the writing and one “wish” – an area of improvement.

Alternatively, if you have an established peer editing process in your classroom, this is a great opportunity to use it!

8. Provide Options for Presentation

Now for the fun part – the presentation of the movie review! I believe that students do their best work when they can express choice and voice in their finished product. 

Movie reviews can be shared in a lot of different ways (in the ELA classroom and in real life!). First, I have students select whether they want to share their completed review as a newspaper article, blog post, podcast, pre-recorded video, or even a live presentation in class.

If you’re tight on time, one trick I love is to put students in small groups (I find four works well) and present their reviews to each other. This alternative to whole-class presentations frees me up to circulate among the different groups. You’d be surprised at how much you can see and hear while doing this! At the end of each presentation, I like to have students grade each other using a common rubric. The presenters can self-assess their work as well!

There you have it! I hope you have a blast bringing a movie review assignment into your middle school ELA classroom. Three cheers to the end of the year!

movie review lesson plan high school

Looking to integrate more videos into your ELA classroom? Check out my suggestions for 7 Ways to Bring Videos Into Secondary ELA .

Wrapping up your year? My 9 Creative Ideas for Student Awards celebrate every student in your class!

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So What Do You Think? Writing a Review

So What Do You Think? Writing a Review

  • Resources & Preparation
  • Instructional Plan
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Teenagers are often outspoken and opinionated. Writing reviews of the literature they read gives them a chance to express their ideas while developing style and voice. This lesson uses discussion of student opinions about yesterday's lunch or a popular TV show serves as an introduction to the genre of reviews. Students then read and analyze conflicting reviews. After examining samples of movie, music, restaurant, and book reviews, students devise guidelines for writing interesting and informative reviews. They then produce their own reviews of the literature they're reading in class. Finally, students compare their ideas and their pieces with published reviews of the same piece of literature. Though this lesson is illustrated with examples from student and professional reviews of Raymond Carver's writing, the techniques can be used with whatever literature students are reading.

Featured Resources

Components of a Review : This handout gives an overview of what is normally included in a critical review.

Review Guidelines : Students can use these guidelines when writing their own critical reviews.

From Theory to Practice

While it's important for students to learn to read and evaluate critical commentary, "Each reader has a right-and even a responsibility-to form his or her own opinions, based on that reader's reading and understanding of a piece of literature, and to be able to support those opinions with solid reasons" (97).

When students express ideas on an author's work that are also noted by critics, "it presents a perfect opportunity to introduce critical commentary naturally into class discussion in order to promote a deeper understanding of the literature" (100).

Further Reading

Common Core Standards

This resource has been aligned to the Common Core State Standards for states in which they have been adopted. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, CCSS alignments are forthcoming.

State Standards

This lesson has been aligned to standards in the following states. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, standard alignments are not currently available for that state.

NCTE/IRA National Standards for the English Language Arts

  • 1. Students read a wide range of print and nonprint texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment. Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works.
  • 3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics).
  • 4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.
  • 5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
  • 6. Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and nonprint texts.
  • 7. Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print and nonprint texts, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.
  • 8. Students use a variety of technological and information resources (e.g., libraries, databases, computer networks, video) to gather and synthesize information and to create and communicate knowledge.
  • 9. Students develop an understanding of and respect for diversity in language use, patterns, and dialects across cultures, ethnic groups, geographic regions, and social roles.
  • 12. Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).

Materials and Technology

  • Sample reviews of various types (movie, music, restaurant, book, etc.), both print and online
  • Specific reviews of the literature students are reading
  • Components of a Review
  • Creating Classroom Discussion about Reviews
  • Student Example of a Book Review
  • Review Guidelines
  • Writing a Review Checklist
  • Student Reflection Sheet

Preparation

  • two conflicting reviews of a current movie, television show, or CD with which students are likely familiar.
  • reviews specific to the writer(s) who students are reading. The Stauffer Library Reference and  Book Reviews in the Yahoo! Directory may be helpful in finding those reviews.
  • Make appropriate number of copies of handouts.
  • Test the ReadWriteThink Pinting Press on your computers to familiarize yourself with the tool and ensure that you have the Flash plug-in installed. You can download the plug-in from the technical support page.

Student Objectives

Students will

  • read a variety of different kinds of reviews.
  • determine the qualities and characteristics of an effective review.
  • use critical thinking skills to formulate their own opinions about a writer's work.
  • apply their knowledge to write their own reviews.
  • compare their ideas and their work to that of professional reviewers.

Session One

  • In this first class session, work to generate interest in writing a review-and to convince students that they do have strong and valid opinions.
  • If lunch was "gross," what made it so?
  • If the show was "really funny," why did it make them laugh?
  • Ask students why they go to certain movies, buy specific CDs, or choose to eat in particular restaurants. Encourage them to explore where they get their "recommendations" from.
  • Invite students to share both positive and negative experiences they have had as a result of listening to someone else's opinion.
  • Lead the discussion to a point where students begin to see that word-of-mouth recommendations and published reviews essentially serve the same purpose: to comment on and evaluate a work or an event.
  • Share two conflicting reviews with students.
  • the kind of information included in both reviews.
  • the specific points the reviewers agree and disagree about.
  • any differences in focus between the reviews.
  • which review is more entertaining—and why.
  • which review is more convincing—and why.
  • Ask students to list various kinds of reviews and to suggest where they can find these reviews (newspapers, magazines, journals, and online).
  • For homework, ask each student bring one to three reviews to class.

Session Two

  • In this second session, focus on helping students determine the qualities and characteristics of a good review.
  • the name of what is being reviewed
  • a clear statement of the reviewer's opinion (i.e., a thesis)
  • specific examples that support the reviewer's opinion
  • a particular tone (use of humor, sarcasm, authority, etc.).
  • book reviews may include quotations from the work.
  • restaurant reviews may discuss atmosphere.
  • both music and literary reviews may trace developments in the writer/musician's history.
  • Each small group should choose one review to read to the class along with their own short oral analysis.
  • As a conclusion to the activity, the class as a whole should compile a list on the board or on chart paper of qualities that contribute to a good review. If desired, share the Components of a Review handout, which reviews the parts of a review.
  • The teacher should collect all reviews students brought in for homework for use in future sessions.

Session Three

  • In this third session, work to get students to focus on the particular attributes of a book review in preparation for writing their own reviews of the literature they're reading.
  • Ideally, the teacher should have a selection of book reviews from those collected from students the previous day. In case students have not brought in book reviews, the teacher should have such reviews available. These reviews should be carefully chosen so that their content is accessible to students. It's best if some reviews focus on works students may have read while others are of work unfamiliar to students.)
  • In small groups of three or four, have students examine a book review and break it down into its components to determine how the introduction, the body, and the conclusion allow the writer to make his/her points.
  • Next, students should examine the particular style of their group's review and determine how the writer achieves a unique voice. Each group should try to determine the tone of their review (i.e., pompous and authoritative, humorous, enthusiastic, analytical, etc.) by noting such things as word choice, sentence structure, and use of detail. If students have collected reviews written by the same reviewer, these "elusive" qualities may be easier to spot.
  • Invite a class discussion about how a review combines the informative aspects of straight journalism with the "pizzazz" of personal narrative.
  • Where did your review appear?
  • What do you know about this publication?
  • Who do you think the audience for this publication would be?
  • What would a reader who had read the book take from the review?
  • What would a reader unfamiliar with the book take from the review?
  • By the end of the session, ask students to compile a class list of broad, basic guidelines for writing a review. Example guidelines are also available.
  • Invite students to begin writing the first draft of a review based on the particular piece(s) of literature the class is studying.
  • If students are reading one book, that one work would be the focus of the review.
  • If students are reading more than one work (i.e., a number of short stories, poems, or essays) by an author, the review can cover any or all of this material.
  • Ask students to design a rating system to include with the written review. The system can be as traditional as 1-5 stars or something more creative.
NOTE: Older students tend to get the style and tone of a review quite quickly, while younger students often produce something more like a book report in the early drafts. Writing instruction should be geared to the ability of each class.
  • Use the Writing a Review Checklist as a guide to help students draft and edit their reviews.

Session Four

  • In this fourth session, introduce critical commentary into class discussion.
  • When the students have completed their reviews, invite them to publish their reviews using one of the options on the ReadWriteThink Printing Press . Print them when they are complete.
  • With their final drafts complete, have students read professionally written reviews on the same text and compare their ideas as well as their writing to these reviews. Depending on the accessibility of these reviews, you can collect all published material or students can be assigned this task. (It's for this reason that this aspect of the assignment works best if the writers reviewed are contemporary.)
  • When comparing their reviews with the published pieces, students should find points that are raised in both. This process demystifies critical commentary and allows students to feel comfortable discussing the work of reviewers. For example, one of my students writes of his appreciation of Carver's "deadpan humor."
  • Teachers can use such excerpts to generate lively classroom discussion. If desired, use the this suggestion for creating a classroom discussion.
  • After all students have reacted to each excerpt, invite the class to break into pairs or small groups, with each group responsible for sifting through the material on one of the papers.
  • Finally, have students present conclusions based on their peers' responses to the critical commentary.
  • a classroom bulletin board displaying reviews, accompanied by artwork and photographs of the authors.
  • a class compilation of reviews. Students can use the ReadWriteThink Printing Press to compile their reviews in a reader-friendly format.
  • a class publication with all reviews collected in a booklet, brochure, or binder and saved for future classes who will be studying the same author. This collection can be added to over the years to create an "historical perspective" on a particular works/authors.
  • submissions to print and online publications that seek reviews. (Note: Teen Ink seeks student written reviews on all topics.)
  • writing an individual response to a review to then share with the class.
  • revising and rewriting their own original reviews to address points raised by the professional reviewer.
  • working with a partner and each taking a side in response to a review, with one student proving the reviewer is "right" and the other proving him/her "wrong."
  • When students are comparing different types of reviews, invite them to use the Venn Diagram interactive.

Student Assessment / Reflections

  • Grade the review as a complete writing assignment.
  • As students write and revise their reviews, guide their work with the Review Checklist , a worksheet that outlines the vital features of a good review and asks students to verify that their final review includes these specific features. This checklist can be used by the teacher in evaluating the review.
  • Students can assess their own work and learning by completing a Reflection Sheet that is handed in with the review. As with all reflection sheets, the form should include 4–5 questions that make writers really think about their pieces and the process that led to their creation.
  • Publish student reviews using one of the options listed above to provide further feedback and assessment for students.
  • Calendar Activities
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The interactive Printing Press is designed to assist students in creating newspapers, brochures, and flyers.

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  • Kindergarten K

Writing a Movie Review

In this lesson, you will have students watch a classic movie in class. Depending on the length of the movie, this could take more than one class period. Then, you will have them write a summary/review of the movie.

Students will learn: To watch and listen to a movie To take notes while watching a movie To write a summary/review of a movie

Classic Movie appropriate for high school students Notebook paper for notes and for final copy Pencils or pens and whiteouts

First, you will have students watch a classic movie. This could take two class periods. It depends on the length of the movie. While the students watch the movie, they are to take notes. Then, you will have them write a summary/review of the movie. They need to include the name of the movie, who wrote it, the setting, the main characters, and a short summary of what happened in the movie. They also need to write how they felt about the movie and why they felt that way. After that, you will collect the papers and grade them.

You can grade the students on the content of their paper and if they included the main points of the movie. You can also grade them on organization, sentence structure, paragraph structure, grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

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Home » Movies » Movie Reviews

Lesson Plan review – a harrowing look at teen drug addiction

lesson-plan-review-netflix

We review the Netflix film Lesson Plan, which does not contain spoilers.

Netflix has had a string of action films with compelling stories, and Lesson Plan,   directed by Daniel Markowicz , is jam-packed. From the very beginning, he sets the tone of the story with a drug dealer who has gotten to high school students.

He has been planting these drugs in schools and these poor teenagers fall deep into addiction . After a teacher tragically dies, his friend, who happens to be a former cop, takes over his old job in hopes of catching the people responsible for his murder, as per the synopsis on IMDB.

The cop takes his old skills while he was working undercover and he applies that to teaching his friend’s students how to defend themselves, just in case they ever encountered these henchmen with the drugs. what was so interesting about this was the fact that the teens who weren’t on drugs were so keen on helping their classmates get out of the addiction.

They were very vocal about their friend’s whereabouts in front of teachers and they ended up forming their own group to find them. While all this is happening, the cop has to deal with his own trauma as his past comes back to haunt him.

When he was undercover, he got so close to getting the head dealer, but it cost him his wife. So he tries to live again and turn those bad moments into something good by helping these teens. 

The film has some great action but when it gets into the fight choreography it looks unpolished. It does begin to drag in the middle because there are many characters involved, and the story gets lost.

But, once the teens get involved with their group it picks back up again. The better thread of the story is how these teens are helping each other, you get to see the underground of the drug deals and it’s concerning.

This really does happen in many high schools in different countries, and it’s difficult to actually stop this. It becomes like an idea planted in someone’s mind and it’s almost impossible to yank it out.

Apart from the character development of the cop, the movie does highlight the early signs of addiction and what to watch for when you’re a parent with a teen in high school.

Markowicz made some good decisions in regard to teaching the children how to defend themselves. He was able to have the former cop develop into someone with a heart and he seemed healed by the end of this film.

Even though bad things can happen to good people, it doesn’t mean they have to stay broken. There’s a way to patch everything together.

What did you think of the Netflix film Lesson Plan? Comment below.

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Article by Amanda Guarragi

Amanda Guarragi joined Ready Steady Cut as an Entertainment Writer in June 2022. She is a Toronto-based film critic who has covered TIFF, Sundance Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, and HorrorFest International. Amanda is also a growing YouTuber, with her channel Candid Cinema growing in popularity.

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FILM STUDY WORKSHEET FOR A WORK OF HISTORICAL FICTION

A cross-curricular activity using a movie worksheet.

movie review lesson plan high school

Click here to download TWM’s Film Study Worksheet for Historical Fiction . Adapt this movie worksheet for the needs and abilities of the class.

Why Students Need Instruction in Historical Fiction

Today’s adults usually become acquainted with events from the past through movies that are works of historical fiction. However, feature films that deal with historical topics are in fact stories with protagonists, antagonists, conflicts, resolution, characters with various personality traits, and other literary elements and devices. Often, filmmakers introduce major factual errors in the interests of telling a better story. (An example of this is the movie  Selma .) TWM contends that an important part of both social studies and ELA instruction is to give students the analytical tools to recognize historical fiction in film and to analyze it as a work of fiction. These are skills that will benefit students throughout their lives.

In addition, many social studies teachers use feature films dealing with historical events to supplement curriculum and vary the classroom experience. Using an appropriate piece of historical fiction adds an element of deeply felt experience to social studies classes. An educational presentation of such a movie requires that students be made aware that they are viewing a literary work that employs the devices of fiction. Not only does this approach prepare students for a process that will be useful through their adult years, it has obvious cross-curricular benefits.

To assist teachers in presenting historical fiction as a literary phenomenon,TWM has developed a Film Study Worksheet for Historical Fiction. This movie worksheet focuses on the film as a literary work and then directs students to compare the movie to the historical record. Finally, the worksheet requests students to evaluate the movie as a source of historical information. The worksheet is designed to be adapted by teachers based on the abilities of their students, time constraints, and the needs of the curriculum.

To minimize class time spent on teaching students about the literary nature of historical fiction, TWM suggests a Historical Fiction in Film Cross-Curricular Homework Project. This is a semester-long project in which students are required to watch several movies of historical fiction at home. The movies must be chosen from a list prepared by the teacher. See TWM’s film suggestions for American History and World History. For each film, students are required to fill out a movie worksheet in which they must identify protagonist, antagonist, conflict, resolution, and various other literary elements and devices. As time permits, these can be reviewed in class. This approach teaches an invaluable lesson while saving class time for the standard social studies curriculum.

How to Use the Movie Worksheet in Class

SELECTING THE FILM:

TWM recommends selecting movies for both artistic merit and relative historical accuracy. Teachers should be seen as role models who insist upon quality in the media they present. For some students, watching films in class or as homework will be their first exposure to movies of excellence. TWM provides suggested historical fiction film lists for American History and World History.

USING THE WORKSHEET IN CLASS:

It is sometimes best to give the class an introduction to the actual events portrayed in the film through a lecture, reading assignments, class exercises, research project, or some other type of instruction. Information with which to evaluate the accuracy of the movie can also be provided after the film has been shown. (Most TWM Learning Guides for works of historical fiction contain an analysis of the accuracy of the film.) Students who are shown a movie in class can be assigned to research the historical accuracy of the movie as homework. Questions 7 – 10 of the movie worksheet provide questions relating to the movie’s historical accuracy.

Review the worksheet and make any changes appropriate for the abilities of the class, the idiosyncrasies of the movie, and the goals for the unit. The worksheet can also be easily adapted for written works of historical fiction or for use in English Language Arts classes studying the genre of historical fiction. For works of historical fiction that follow the paradigm of the hero’s journey, see TWM’s Hero’s Journey Worksheet — Explaining the Monomyth ; modify that Worksheet as appropriate and consider adding questions 7 – 10 from the Film Study Worksheet for Historical Fiction.

If necessary, remind students that the antagonist in a story is not limited to being a person. The antagonist can also be nature, an institution, a condition of society, a personality trait of the protagonist, or a problem in the relationship between the protagonist and another person. The antagonist is whoever or whatever the protagonist must overcome in the conflict described in the story. Student descriptions of each should include their role in the story and some of their important character traits.

TWM suggests that students review all of the questions in the movie worksheet before they watch the film. Several three to five-minute breaks during the movie will allow students to review the questions again and make notes without missing any of the action. Provide a longer period of five to ten minutes after the movie has been completed for students to finalize their notes and then sufficient time to write full answers to the questions. Teachers may want to assign this last step as homework.

There are many different ways that the movie worksheet can be employed in class. For example, instead of having each student provide a written response to the worksheet, the questions can serve as the basis for a class discussion. Students can also be separated into groups of four or fewer, with each group being asked to give an oral presentation in response to a question on the worksheet. The worksheet can be simplified by eliminating some of the questions or by only requiring a single device of fiction to be discussed (question #4) and only one striking image to be described (question #6). In addition, when there are no reasonable ways for students to research the accuracy of the movie, delete question #7 or substitute another question for it. In these instances, the accuracy of the movie should be described in a lecture, a handout, or by some other means.

An example of a worksheet adapted for the film Music Within with suggested responses is available at the Music Within Film Study Worksheet with Suggested Responses. This film, which TWM highly recommends, is about the life of Richard Pimentel who advocated for the rights of the disabled and was one of the people responsible for the passage in 1990 of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The acceptance of the disabled as full-fledged human beings and the removal of barriers to their participation in society was one of the five great advances in human rights in the United States that began during the 20th century (see the Learning Guide to Music Within). In the case of this movie, there is not a lot of research material available that students can access in order to verify the accuracy of the film. Therefore, question #7 from the Worksheet has been changed to ask a specific question about the movie. Information provided in the Learning Guide about the accuracy of the film will need to be given to students in the form of a lecture.

HISTORICAL FICTION IN FILM CROSS-CURRICULAR HOMEWORK PROJECT:

Having students watch movies outside of class conserves instructional time. Because viewing works of historical fiction will usually be the main way that students experience history in their adult lives, TWM suggests that each semester, students in high school social studies or ELA courses be given a homework assignment to watch two — four filmed works of historical fiction. This can also be done in higher functioning middle school or junior high classes. Students should be required to analyze the film by responding to the questions presented in the movie worksheet. This can be done alone or in groups. See TWM’s Historical Fiction in Film Cross-Curricular Homework Project.

HISTORICAL FICTION IN THE COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS:

Published in 2010, the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects include historical fiction as a genre of literature covered by the Standards. p. 57. In addition, historical fiction is specifically mentioned in the Reading Literature standards for CCR 9 for grades 6 & 7 on page 37 and in the writing standards under CCR 9, page 44. The fact that historical fiction is included in the definition of the term “fiction” means that all of the Standards that relate to fiction as a whole relate to historical fiction as well.

The Common Core standards support the analysis of historical fiction in social studies classes but only for grades 6 & 7. TWM believes that this is a major deficiency. Because historical fiction will be the primary way that most students will learn about historical events as adults, TWM recommends that historical fiction be part of the social studies curriculum through grade 12.

TWM has developed generic movie worksheets designed to cover most types of fictional presentations. These worksheets stress the literary elements and devices of the story and engage higher level thinking skills. There are worksheets for:

  • General Fiction ;
  • Adaptations of Novels ;
  • The Hero’s Journey ;
  • Historical Fiction ; (this worksheet) and
  • Science Fiction .

These movie worksheets are designed to be modified for the abilities of the class, the curriculum goals of the teacher, the idiosyncrasies of the film, and specific literary, dramatic, or cinematic elements that the class has studied that may be evident from the movie.

Movie Lesson Plan Ideas

Ways to Effectively Use Films in Class

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Including movies in your lessons can help enhance learning and increase student interest while providing direct instruction on the topic. Although there are pros and cons to including movies in lesson plans , you can ensure that the movies you choose have the learning impact you desire.

If you are unable to show an entire film because of time constraints or school guidelines, you may want to select specific scenes or clips to share with your students. To increase understanding of particularly complex dialogue, use the closed caption feature when showing the film.

A variety of effective ways will allow you to include movies in your classroom lessons that will reinforce learning objectives.

Create a Generic Worksheet for Movies

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If you plan to show movies regularly in class, consider creating a generic worksheet that you can use for all the movies you show over the course of the year. Include a list of issues and questions that are relevant to all movies, including:

  • What is the setting of the movie? 
  • What is the basic plot? 
  • Who is (are) the protagonist(s)? 
  • Who is the antagonist? 
  • Give a brief summary of the movie. 
  • What are your impressions of the movie? 
  • How does the movie relate to what we are studying in class? 
  • Movie score or soundtrack
  • Camera point of view

Create a Movie-Specific Worksheet

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If there is a particular movie that fits well in your lesson plan, create a worksheet specific to that film. Watch the movie yourself in advance to determine the sequence of events you want your students to observe as they watch. Include general information, such as the title of the film and the director, as well as specific questions that the students should answer as they watch the movie. To ensure that students are noting the most important aspects of the movie, pause the film occasionally to allow them time to fill in their answers. Include space on the worksheet for open-ended questions about major plot points in the film.

Have Your Students Take Notes

David Schaffer / Getty Images

It is important that students learn how to take notes effectively. Before instructing your students to take notes during a film, teach them proper note-taking skills. The underlying benefit of taking notes during the movie is that students will pay attention to details as they decide what is important enough to include in their notes. By writing down their thoughts as they view the film, they are more likely to have responses that they can share later during class discussions.

Create a Cause-and-Effect Worksheet

Klaus Vedfelt / Getty Images 

A cause-and-effect worksheet asks students to analyze specific plot points in the movie. You might start them off with an example, providing them with the cause , and then explain how that impacted the story, also called the effect. A basic cause-and-effect worksheet might start with an event and then include a blank space where the students can fill in the effect of that event

A cause-and-effect worksheet on the film " The Grapes of Wrath " might start with a description of the drought in Oklahoma:

"Event: A terrible drought has hit Oklahoma. Because of this event, (x and y happened)."

Start and Stop With Discussion

Hero Images / Getty Images

With this  lesson plan  idea, you stop the movie at key points so that students can respond as a class to questions posted on the board. 

As an alternative, you may choose not to prepare questions in advance but rather to allow the discussion to unfold organically. By stopping the movie to discuss it, you can take advantage of teachable moments that arise in the film. You can also point out historical inaccuracies in the movie. To assess whether this method is effective for your class, keep track of the students who participate in each discussion.

Have the Students Write a Review

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Another way to see how much your students are learning from a film is to have them write a movie review. Before the movie begins, go over the elements of a great movie review . Remind students that a movie review should include a description of the movie without spoiling the ending. Share a selection of well-written movie reviews with the class. To ensure that students include pertinent information, provide them with a list of the specific elements you expect to see. You might also show them the grading rubric that you plan to use as another way of indicating what their final review should include. 

Compare and Contrast Films or Scenes

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One way to have students better understand a scene in a piece of literature is to show different film adaptations of the same work. For example, there are multiple film adaptations of the novel " Frankenstein ."  Ask students about the director's interpretation of the text or whether the content of the book is accurately represented in the movie.

If you are showing different versions of a scene, such as a scene from one of Shakespeare's plays , you can deepen student understanding by having them note the different interpretations and offer explanations for those differences.

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Macmillan Life Skills: Critical Thinking – Movie review

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In this Macmillan Life Skills lesson, students use pictures to write their own film review developing the following life skills: expressing opinions, analysing information and critical thinking.

Macmillan Life Skills: Critical Thinking – Movie review Lesson plan

  • American English
  • British English
  • Integrated Skills
  • Intermediate
  • Lesson Plan / Teacher's Notes
  • Pre-Intermediate
  • Printable Worksheet
  • Up to 45 mins
  • Whole Class

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movie review lesson plan high school

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Lesson plan, common sense media reviewers.

movie review lesson plan high school

Bland action-thriller has lots of violence, drugs, language.

Lesson Plan movie poster

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Even though the film is violent, the underscoring

Damien is a former cop who uses violence to fight

The film isn't racially diverse, but there's some

Much of the film is comprised of fighting/violent

Making out.

"F--k," "damn," "s--t," "f--king."

The villains are students and teachers who are par

Parents need to know that Lesson Plan is a Polish thriller-action film about a former cop who finds out his friend, a history teacher, died under mysterious circumstances. He takes his friend's job at the school to investigate what led to his friend's death. The film includes numerous scenes with discussions…

Positive Messages

Even though the film is violent, the underscoring message is that perseverance and teamwork are important to rectifying societal issues.

Positive Role Models

Damien is a former cop who uses violence to fight through the drug ring that has killed his friend. Even though he's a violent man, he's portrayed as someone who uses violence for good, since he's trying to restore justice and save his friend's school from drugs and crime. He also teaches his class self-protection skills, which come in handy when they all take down the drug ring.

Diverse Representations

The film isn't racially diverse, but there's some exposure to Polish culture. Female characters aren't well-defined outside of their relationships to men, especially Damian's love interest, who acts less like a fellow teacher and more like a lovestruck student. Only one female character, a student, is portrayed as someone who isn't solely defined by male relationships.

Did we miss something on diversity? Suggest an update.

Violence & Scariness

Much of the film is comprised of fighting/violent scenes. In one scene, a character gets shot in the head. It's insinuated that Damian's love interest, a fellow teacher, was about to be sexually assaulted by a gang of students if Damian didn't arrive to fight them. Damian's friend, a history teacher, dies allegedly by suicide.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.

Sex, Romance & Nudity

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The villains are students and teachers who are part of a drug ring within the school. Discussions about drug use and addiction, as well as scenes with drinking and drug use.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Lesson Plan is a Polish thriller-action film about a former cop who finds out his friend, a history teacher, died under mysterious circumstances. He takes his friend's job at the school to investigate what led to his friend's death. The film includes numerous scenes with discussions and images of drug use and drinking. Much of the film is comprised of fighting/violent scenes. A character gets shot in the head. It's insinuated a woman was about to be sexually assaulted by a gang of students. Someone allegedly dies by suicide. Language includes "f--k," "damn," "s--t," and "f--king." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails .

Where to Watch

Videos and photos.

Piotr Witkowski in Lesson Plan

Community Reviews

  • Parents say

There aren't any parent reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the Story?

LESSON PLAN follows Damian (Piotr Witkowski), a former police officer with jiu-jitsu skills, on the hunt for his friend's murderers. Because his friend was a history teacher at a school known for drug use, Damian takes his friend's job to investigate the truth behind his friend's death.

Is It Any Good?

Lesson Plan is charming in the sense that it evokes a retro sense of the hero using martial arts to instill values into others around him. But overall, the film is bland at best, and confusing at worst. Why would a school randomly hire someone not qualified to be a teacher to fill a position? Why is Damian (Witkowski) trying to teach when he's not trained in history? Why is he using his teaching time to teach unauthorized jiu-jitsu classes? And why is his love interest Agata, another teacher at the school, less focused on teaching and more focused on being a stereotype of a feminine character defined by her status as a "love interest"?

Aside from these questions, the film might be enjoyable if you love films like these -- think Jean-Claude Van Damme , Chuck Norris (who is name-checked in the film), or even Jackie Chan films. But if you aren't willing to turn off your brain and go along with standard action tropes, Lesson Plan might be a tedious watch for you.

Talk to Your Kids About ...

Families can talk about action-thrillers. How does this one compare to others you've seen?

What positive lessons does Damian give his students?

How is violence used as a plot device in the film?

What message does the film have about drugs and alcohol?

How does the film incorporate perseverance and teamwork ?

Movie Details

  • On DVD or streaming : November 23, 2022
  • Cast : Piotr Witkowski , Marcin Bosak , Pascal Fischer , Zuzanna Galewicz
  • Director : Daniel Markowicz
  • Studio : Netflix
  • Genre : Thriller
  • Run time : 101 minutes
  • MPAA rating : NR
  • Last updated : November 30, 2022

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

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  • Cast & crew

Cameron Arnett, Karen Abercrombie, Priscilla C. Shirer, and Aspen Kennedy in The Forge (2024)

After graduating from high school without any plans for the future, Isaiah receives a push to start making better life decisions. After graduating from high school without any plans for the future, Isaiah receives a push to start making better life decisions. After graduating from high school without any plans for the future, Isaiah receives a push to start making better life decisions.

  • Alex Kendrick
  • Stephen Kendrick
  • Karen Abercrombie
  • Priscilla C. Shirer
  • Cameron Arnett

Trailer[OV]

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    Use this lesson plan and worksheet to help your students practice their active viewing skills, no matter what movie they're watching! We've designed this lesson and activity for middle school, but it could also be great for upper elementary or even in a high school class. Feel free to adapt this lesson (and the included Google Doc movie guide ...

  3. PDF Movie/Film Review Lesson Plan

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    Jess's friend and teammate, Jules, who is played by Keira Knightly (Pirates of the Caribbean) encourages Jess to play despite her parent's wishes. The film deals with serious social problems such as sexism and racism, but the film is very funny at the same time! The acting is very good and of course, there is a happy ending!

  5. Writing a Movie Review: Teaching Tips and Lesson Ideas

    4. Provide Common Vocabulary. As part of a film study, it's important for students to be able to speak the "language" of movie making. After viewing the movie, I like to take some time to outline some key terms to help students write their reviews. Words like blockbuster, avant-garde, disjointed, or uninspired can help elevate movie ...

  6. So What Do You Think? Writing a Review

    Overview. Teenagers are often outspoken and opinionated. Writing reviews of the literature they read gives them a chance to express their ideas while developing style and voice. This lesson uses discussion of student opinions about yesterday's lunch or a popular TV show serves as an introduction to the genre of reviews.

  7. Teach with Movies

    Social Studies. Each film recommended by TeachWithMovies.org contains lessons on life and positive moral messages. Our Guides and Lesson Plans show teachers how to stress these messages and make them meaningful for young audiences. Benefits. Possible Problems.

  8. PDF Movie Review Rubric

    The review focuses on the following areas: character(s), setting, and plot. The review focuses 2 of 3: character, setting, plot. The review includes only one of the following: character, setting, and plot. The review does not include a description of character, setting, or plot. Opinion/Supporting Details. Student rating____ Teacher rating____.

  9. Inside Out and SEL: A Movie Guide and Lesson Plan for Your Classroom

    Inside Out SEL Lesson Plan and Graphic Organizer. Begin by introducing the movie and give students some context about why it's worth thinking about more deeply. A lot of students may have seen the movie already since it came out in 2015, so make a strict "If you know it, don't blow it" rule to prevent spoilers.

  10. PDF Lesson plan January

    Learners work in pairs to do activity 1. Make sure learners understand that all the information has been included in the film review. Encourage learners to notice how the review has been organised into 3 paragraphs. 4. (15 - 20 minutes) Learners do activity 2 individually. Monitor learners as they write to make sure they are following the steps.

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    Find movie review lesson plans and teaching resources. From movie review rubric worksheets to writing a movie review videos, quickly find teacher-reviewed educational resources. ... Middle or high school volcanologists watch the 1997 film, Dante's Peak. They make observations as they watch and then write a movie review, focusing on what was ...

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    Writing a Movie Review. For Teachers 10th - 12th. Students explore movies. In this literature session, students watch a classic movie and take notes. Students write a review of the movie to include author, setting, characters, summary, and how they felt about the movie and why. +.

  13. Writing a Movie Review Lesson Plan

    This could take two class periods. It depends on the length of the movie. While the students watch the movie, they are to take notes. Then, you will have them write a summary/review of the movie. They need to include the name of the movie, who wrote it, the setting, the main characters, and a short summary of what happened in the movie.

  14. Lesson Plan review

    We review the Netflix film Lesson Plan, which does not contain spoilers. Netflix has had a string of action films with compelling stories, and Lesson Plan, directed by Daniel Markowicz, is jam-packed. From the very beginning, he sets the tone of the story with a drug dealer who has gotten to high school students.

  15. Movie Review Writing

    Description. Movie Review Writing - Presentation and Activities for Writing a Film Review: This movie review writing lesson is a comprehensive resource that covers all aspects of teaching students how to write a compelling movie review. With detailed presentation to guide the lesson and a variety of informational handouts and graphic organizers ...

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    The Searchers. This classic Western and the TWM Learning Guide will help teachers introduce students to important myths of the Western genre which even today: 1) affect how some people act in everyday life; 2) appear repeatedly in literature, film, and music; 3) are used by some politicians to gain votes; and 4) are employed by advertisers to ...

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  18. Movie Lesson Plan Ideas

    Create a Movie-Specific Worksheet. If there is a particular movie that fits well in your lesson plan, create a worksheet specific to that film. Watch the movie yourself in advance to determine the sequence of events you want your students to observe as they watch. Include general information, such as the title of the film and the director, as ...

  19. Macmillan Life Skills: Critical Thinking

    Join onestopenglish today . With more than 700,000 registered users in over 100 countries around the world, Onestopenglish is the number one resource site for English language teachers, providing access to thousands of resources, including lesson plans, worksheets, audio, video and flashcards.

  20. Movie Review Lesson Plan for ESL Students

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  21. Film review lesson plan by Christal Unicorn Ratings

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  22. Lesson Plan Movie Review

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  23. Lesson Plan Review: Slick Action Thriller That Becomes ...

    November 23, 2022. Lesson Plan ( Plan lekcji) is a Polish language thriller about a former undercover agent who becomes a History teacher at a local high school to bust an entire drug syndicate. The film is directed by Daniel Markowicz and stars Piotr Witkowski in the titular role of the crime-fighting cop. Moreover, the screenplay of the movie ...

  24. The Forge (2024)

    The Forge: Directed by Alex Kendrick. With Karen Abercrombie, Priscilla C. Shirer, Cameron Arnett, Ben VanderMey. After graduating from high school without any plans for the future, Isaiah receives a push to start making better life decisions.