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Home — Essay Samples — Entertainment — Movies — Movie Review

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Essays on Movie Review

Hook examples for movie review essays, "a cinematic masterpiece" hook.

"Prepare to be captivated by the sheer brilliance of this cinematic masterpiece. Explore how every frame, performance, and detail contributes to a visual and emotional spectacle."

"Beyond the Screen: Themes and Messages" Hook

"This film transcends entertainment, offering profound themes and powerful messages. Dive into the underlying ideas and social commentary that make it a thought-provoking experience."

"The Journey of Character Development" Hook

"Follow the compelling journey of characters who evolve throughout the film. Analyze their growth, conflicts, and relationships, making this movie a character-driven narrative."

"Visual Delights: Cinematography and Special Effects" Hook

"Be prepared to be visually stunned by the breathtaking cinematography and cutting-edge special effects. Explore how these elements enhance the storytelling and immerse the audience."

"Unforgettable Performances" Hook

"The cast delivers unforgettable performances that breathe life into the characters. Discuss standout acting moments, character dynamics, and the emotional impact of their roles."

"The Soundtrack: Music That Moves" Hook

"The film's soundtrack is more than just music; it's an integral part of the storytelling. Explore how the score enhances emotions, sets the tone, and complements the visuals."

"Cinematic Analysis: Directing and Editing" Hook

"Delve into the meticulous craftsmanship of the director and editor. Analyze their choices in pacing, sequencing, and storytelling techniques that make this film a cinematic triumph."

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How to Write a Movie Review

Last Updated: October 13, 2023 Fact Checked

wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 177 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. There are 14 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 5,400,974 times. Learn more...

Whether a movie is a rotten tomato or a brilliant work of art, if people are watching it, it's worth critiquing. A decent movie review should entertain, persuade and inform, providing an original opinion without giving away too much of the plot. A great movie review can be a work of art in its own right. Read on to learn how to analyze a movie like a professional film critic, come up with an interesting thesis, and write a review as entertaining as your source material.

Sample Movie Reviews

essay a film review

Writing an Intro for a Movie Review

Step 1 Start with a compelling fact, quote, or opinion on the movie.

  • Comparison to Relevant Event or Movie: "Every day, our leaders, politicians, and pundits call for "revenge"– against terrorist groups, against international rivals, against other political parties. But few of them understand the cold, destructive, and ultimately hollow thrill of revenge as well as the characters of Blue Ruin. "
  • Review in a nutshell: "Despite a compelling lead performance by Tom Hanks and a great soundtrack, Forrest Gump never gets out of the shadow of its weak plot and questionable premise."
  • Context or Background Information: " Boyhood might be the first movie made where knowing how it was produced–slowly, over 12 years, with the same actors–is just as crucial as the movie itself."

Step 2 Give a clear, well-established opinion early on.

  • Using stars, a score out of 10 or 100, or the simple thumbs-up and thumbs-down is a quick way to give your thoughts. You then write about why you chose that rating.
  • Great Movie: ABC is the rare movie that succeeds on almost every level, where each character, scene, costume, and joke firing on all cylinders to make a film worth repeated viewings."
  • Bad Movie: "It doesn't matter how much you enjoy kung-fu and karate films: with 47 Ronin, you're better off saving your money, your popcorn, and time."
  • Okay Movie: "I loved the wildly uneven Interstellar far more than I should have, but that doesn't mean it is perfect. Ultimately, the utter awe and spectacle of space swept me through the admittedly heavy-handed plotting and dialogue."

Step 3 Support your opinions with evidence from specific scenes.

  • Great: "Michael B. Jordan and Octavia Spencer's chemistry would carry Fruitvale Station even if the script wasn't as good. The mid-movie prison scene in particular, where the camera never leaves their faces, shows how much they can convey with nothing but their eyelids, the flashing tension of neck muscles, and a barely cracking voice."
  • Bad: " Jurassic World's biggest flaw, a complete lack of relatable female characters, is only further underscored by a laughably unrealistic shot of our heroine running away from a dinosaur – in heels."
  • Okay: "At the end of the day, Snowpiercer can't decide what kind of movie it wants to be. The attention to detail in fight scenes, where every weapon, lightbulb, and slick patch of ground is accounted for, doesn't translate to an ending that seems powerful but ultimately says little of substance."

Step 4 Create an original...

  • Does the film reflect on a current event or contemporary issue? It could be the director's way of engaging in a bigger conversation. Look for ways to relate the content of the film to the "real" world.
  • Does the film seem to have a message, or does it attempt to elicit a specific response or emotion from the audience? You could discuss whether or not it achieves its own goals.
  • Does the film connect with you on a personal level? You could write a review stemming from your own feelings and weave in some personal stories to make it interesting for your readers.

Composing Your Review

Step 1 Follow your thesis paragraph with a short plot summary.

  • When you name characters in your plot summary, list the actors' names directly afterward in parenthesis.
  • Find a place to mention the director's name and the full movie title.
  • If you feel you must discuss information that might "spoil" things for readers, warn them first.

Step 2 Start to talk about the film’s technical and artistic choices.

  • Cinematography: " Her is a world drenched in color, using bright, soft reds and oranges alongside calming whites and grays that both build, and slowly strip away, the feelings of love between the protagonists. Every frame feels like a painting worth sitting in."
  • Tone: "Despite the insane loneliness and high stakes of being stuck alone on Mars, The Martian's witty script keeps humor and excitement alive in every scene. Space may be dangerous and scary, but the joy of scientific discovery is intoxicating."
  • Music and Sound: " No Country For Old Men's bold decision to skip music entirely pays off in spades. The eerie silence of the desert, punctuated by the brief spells of violent, up-close-and-personal sound effects of hunter and hunted, keeps you constantly on the edge of your seat."
  • Acting: "While he's fantastic whenever he's on the move, using his cool stoicism to counteract the rampaging bus, Keanu Reeves can't quite match his costar in the quiet moments of Speed, which falter under his expressionless gaze."

Step 3 Move into your...

  • Keep your writing clear and easy to understand. Don't use too much technical filmmaking jargon, and make your language crisp and accessible.
  • Present both the facts and your opinion. For example, you might state something such as, "The Baroque background music was a jarring contrast to the 20th century setting." This is a lot more informative then simply saying, "The music was a strange choice for the movie."

Step 4 Use plenty of examples to back up your points.

  • Great: "In the end, even the characters of Blue Ruin know how pointless their feud is. But revenge, much like every taut minute of this thriller, is far too addictive to give up until the bitter end.""
  • Bad: "Much like the oft-mentioned "box of chocolates", Forest Gump has a couple of good little morsels. But most of the scenes, too sweet by half, should have been in the trash long before this movie was put out."
  • Okay: "Without the novel, even revolutionary concept, Boyhood may not be a great movie. It might not even be "good.” But the power the film finds in the beauty of passing time and little, inconsequential moments – moments that could only be captured over 12 years of shooting – make Linklater's latest an essential film for anyone interested in the art of film."

Polishing Your Piece

Step 1 Edit your review.

  • Ask yourself whether your review stayed true to your thesis. Did your conclusion tie back in with the initial ideas you proposed?
  • Decide whether your review contains enough details about the movie. You may need to go back and add more description here and there to give readers a better sense of what the movie's about.
  • Decide whether your review is interesting enough as a stand-alone piece of writing. Did you contribute something original to this discussion? What will readers gain from reading your review that they couldn't from simply watching the movie?

Step 2 Proofread your review.

Studying Your Source Material

Step 1 Gather basic facts about the movie.

  • The title of the film, and the year it came out.
  • The director's name.
  • The names of the lead actors.

Step 2 Take notes on the movie as you watch it.

  • Make a note every time something sticks out to you, whether it's good or bad. This could be costuming, makeup, set design, music, etc. Think about how this detail relates to the rest of the movie and what it means in the context of your review.
  • Take note of patterns you begin to notice as the movie unfolds.
  • Use the pause button frequently so you make sure not to miss anything, and rewind as necessary.

Step 3 Analyze the mechanics of the movie.

  • Direction: Consider the director and how he or she choose to portray/explain the events in the story. If the movie was slow, or didn't include things you thought were necessary, you can attribute this to the director. If you've seen other movies directed by the same person, compare them and determine which you like the most.
  • Cinematography: What techniques were used to film the movie? What setting and background elements helped to create a certain tone?
  • Writing: Evaluate the script, including dialogue and characterization. Did you feel like the plot was inventive and unpredictable or boring and weak? Did the characters' words seem credible to you?
  • Editing: Was the movie choppy or did it flow smoothly from scene to scene? Did they incorporate a montage to help build the story? And was this obstructive to the narrative or did it help it? Did they use long cuts to help accentuate an actor's acting ability or many reaction shots to show a group's reaction to an event or dialogue? If visual effects were used were the plates well-chosen and were the composited effects part of a seamless experience? (Whether the effects looked realistic or not is not the jurisdiction of an editor, however, they do choose the footage to be sent off to the compositors, so this could still affect the film.)
  • Costume design: Did the clothing choices fit the style of the movie? Did they contribute to the overall tone, rather than digressing from it?
  • Set design: Consider how the setting of the film influenced its other elements. Did it add or subtract from the experience for you? If the movie was filmed in a real place, was this location well-chosen?
  • Score or soundtrack: Did it work with the scenes? Was it over/under-used? Was it suspenseful? Amusing? Irritating? A soundtrack can make or break a movie, especially if the songs have a particular message or meaning to them.

Step 4 Watch it one more time.

Community Q&A

wikiHow Staff Editor

  • If you don't like the movie, don't be abusive and mean. If possible, avoid watching the movies that you would surely hate. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Understand that just because the movie isn't to your taste, that doesn't mean you should give it a bad review. A good reviewer helps people find movie's they will like. Since you don't have the same taste in movies as everyone else, you need to be able to tell people if they will enjoy the movie, even if you didn't. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Structure is very important; try categorizing the different parts of the film and commenting on each of those individually. Deciding how good each thing is will help you come to a more accurate conclusion. For example, things like acting, special effects, cinematography, think about how good each of those are. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

essay a film review

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About This Article

To write a movie review, start with a compelling fact or opinion to hook your readers, like "Despite a great performance by Tom Hanks, Forrest Gump never overcomes its weak plot." Then, elaborate on your opinion of the movie right off the bat so readers know where you stand. Once your opinion is clear, provide examples from the movie that prove your point, like specific scenes, dialogue, songs, or camera shots. To learn how to study a film closely before you write a review, scroll down! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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Film&Movie Review Examples and Samples

Reviewing films can seem fun, but it actually takes discipline to explain all the elements of a film and to express your opinion succinctly. Check out our film review samples to gain a better understanding of how to write one yourself.

How to Write a Movie Review: A Comprehensive Guide

Writing a movie review is an engaging process that combines film criticism, analysis, and personal opinion to create an informative and thought-provoking piece. A well-crafted review not only serves as a helpful guide for potential viewers but also deepens our understanding of the cinematic experience. In this article, we will explore the essentials of review writing, focusing on crucial elements such as plot summary, thesis, opinion, characters, cinematography, and more.

Start with a Plot Summary

Begin your movie review with a brief synopsis, offering an overview of the film’s storyline. This recap should be concise and engaging, giving readers a general idea of the movie’s premise without revealing too much. Remember that your summary sets the stage for the critique and analysis that follow.

Develop a Thesis

Your thesis is the central idea or argument that you will explore in your movie review. This main point should be clear and focused, serving as the backbone of your critique. Consider what themes or aspects of the film stood out to you, and build your thesis around these observations.

Express Your Opinion

A significant aspect of writing a movie review is sharing your personal viewpoint or perspective. Offer your judgment on the film’s strengths and weaknesses, providing specific examples from the movie to support your appraisal. Be honest and thoughtful in your assessment, considering both your own preferences and the film’s intended audience.

Analyze the Characters

Discuss the film’s characters, examining their roles, personas, and the actors’ performances. Consider how the cast contributes to the overall narrative and whether their portrayals are convincing and memorable. Analyze the characters’ development throughout the movie, as well as the relationships between them.

Examine the Cinematography

Cinematography plays a crucial role in a film’s visual style and storytelling. Delve into the camera work, lighting, photography, and framing, evaluating how these elements enhance or detract from the movie’s overall impact. Consider how the cinematography supports the film’s themes and emotions.

Conduct a Thorough Analysis

A comprehensive movie review requires a detailed examination of various aspects of the film. Study the director’s choices, the music and sound design, and the technical elements such as craftsmanship and artistry. This thorough scrutiny will help you provide a well-rounded critique that captures the essence of the movie.

Discuss the Director’s Role

The director is the creative force behind a film, responsible for shaping its vision and execution. Analyze the director’s choices, considering their impact on the film’s storytelling, pacing, and overall atmosphere. Reflect on the director’s previous work, if applicable, and how this film fits into their oeuvre.

Evaluate Music and Sound

Music and sound play an essential role in creating a film’s mood and atmosphere. Examine the soundtrack, score, and audio design, considering how these elements contribute to the movie’s overall experience. Discuss the effectiveness of the composition, melody, and soundscapes in enhancing the narrative.

Assess Technical Aspects 

Review the technical aspects of the film, such as the expertise and proficiency of the crew, the quality of the special effects, and the overall production value. Analyze how these elements contribute to the film’s success or shortcomings, and whether they support the movie’s themes and narrative.

Evaluate the Acting 

Analyze the actors’ performances, considering their delivery, expression, and interpretation of their roles. Discuss whether the acting feels authentic and engaging, and how it contributes to the film’s overall impact. Pay attention to standout performances or any instances where the acting may have detracted from the movie’s overall quality.

In summary, writing a movie review involves a careful balance of plot summary, thesis development, opinion sharing, and thorough analysis of various aspects of the film, including characters, cinematography, directorial choices, music and sound, and technical elements. By considering all these factors and incorporating the appropriate keyword density and LSI keywords organically throughout your review, you can create an engaging, informative, and well-rounded critique that will appeal to readers and enhance their appreciation for the film. Remember to be honest and thoughtful in your assessment, and most importantly, enjoy the process of delving into the world of cinema.

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How to write a review essay

essay a film review

When assigned a review essay, many students feel overwhelmed. How do you summarize and critique work in only a few paragraphs? This guide will walk you through the basics of writing a review essay, including what to include and how to structure your essay. With practice, you’ll be able to write concise, insightful reviews that provide valuable insights for your readers.

What is a review essay?

A review essay is a type of essay that summarizes and evaluates a text, usually a book or piece of writing. Review essays are usually written for academic purposes, but they can also be written for non-academic audiences. Review essays typically provide a critical perspective on the text. They may identify strengths and weaknesses, argue for or against the text’s thesis, or offer other perspectives on the text. To write a review essay, you will need to read and understand the text you are reviewing. You will also need to have a clear purpose for writing the essay. This might be to argue for or against the text, to summarize and evaluate its contents, or to provide another perspective on the text. Once you have a purpose in mind, you can start to develop your essay. Start by outlining the main points you want to make, and then flesh out your argument with evidence from the text. Be sure to address counterarguments, and end with a conclusion that sums up your argument

What is the purpose of a review essay?

A review essay serves several purposes.

First, it allows the writer to synthesize and make sense of the information they have gathered from multiple sources.

Second, it provides a forum for the writer to express their opinion and offer a critical analysis of the subject matter.

Third, a review essay can be used to persuasively argue in favor of or against a particular point of view.

Fourth, it can be used to generate new ideas or perspectives on a topic. Fifth, a review essay can help to raise awareness of an issue or problem.

Finally, a review essay can be used as a tool for learning, providing an opportunity for the writer to engage in deep reflection on the information they have gathered.

How long should a review essay be?

A review essay should be long enough to cover all the important aspects of the text being reviewed, but not so long that it becomes cumbersome to read. As a general rule, a review essay should be between 1,000 and 1,500 words. This length allows for a thorough analysis of the text without becoming bogged down in details. Of course, the specific length will vary depending on the nature of the text being reviewed and the desired focus of the essay.

For example, if the goal is to provide an overview of a lengthy novel, a longer essay may be necessary. Conversely, if the goal is to provide a detailed analysis of a short poem, a shorter essay may suffice. Ultimately, it is up to the writer to determine the appropriate length for their review essay.

Structure and Format

A review essay format can vary depending on the publication you are submitting to. However, most review essays follow a similar structure, including an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

  • Introduction : The Introduction sets the stage for the rest of the essay by providing background information and introducing the main idea.
  • Body paragraphs : The body paragraphs provide support for the main idea, usually with evidence from the text being reviewed.
  • Conclusion : The conclusion brings the essay to a close by synthesizing the main points and offering final thoughts or recommendations.

By following this structure, review essays can effectively communicate their evaluation of a text to readers.

A review essay examines a piece of writing, a film, or some other form of art, and offers a critical evaluation of it. The first step in writing a review essay is to read the work you are going to be evaluating and take notes. As you read, pay attention to the overall structure of the piece, as well as the author’s use of literary devices such as imagery and figurative language. Once you have finished reading, brainstorm your impressions of the work and decide what elements you want to focus on in your essay. When you begin drafting your paper, start with a brief overview of the work you are evaluating and then move on to discuss specific aspects in more depth. Be sure to support your claims with evidence from the text. In conclusion, provide a general assessment of the merits of the work and explain why you think it is either successful or unsuccessful.

Read more about these steps below:

1. Choose a suitable title.

Choosing an essay title is the first step in writing a review essay. The title of your paper will depend on the focus of your review. For example, if you are writing a review of a book, you may want to include the title of the book in your paper’s title. If you are writing a review of an article, you may want to include the title of the article in your paper’s title. Once you have selected a focus for your paper, you can begin brainstorming potential titles. Remember to be creative-a good title can make your paper stand out from the rest! If you are having trouble coming up with a title, try asking a friend or family member for help. Brainstorming with someone else can often help to generate new and creative ideas.

2. Find reliable sources.

The second step in writing a review essay is to find credible sources. This will help to support your claims and show that you have read and understood the material. You should always aim to include at least three citations in your review, and they should be from different sources. Try to find a mix of primary and secondary sources, as well as academic and non-academic sources. When adding citations, make sure to include the author’s name, the title of the work, the publication date, and the page number. Always check with your instructor for specific citation requirements.

3. Write the Introduction

A review essay introduction should provide the reader with a brief overview of the text under review and might include the author’s thesis statement. The introduction should also introduce the main points to be covered in the body of the essay. To write a successful review essay, it is important to keep your focus narrow and avoid summarizing the text or including too much personal opinion. Instead, stick to providing a clear, objective evaluation of the work. Once you have introduced the text in your review essay introduction, you can move on to developing your argument and supporting it with evidence from the text.

4. Write the Body Paragraphs

The essay body paragraphs of your review should be where you get to dive into the meat of your argument. This is where you’ll talk about the work itself, and how it fits into the larger conversation surrounding it. You’ll want to start each section with a clear topic sentence, followed by several concrete examples to support your claims. Be sure to use specific quotes and page numbers so that your reader can follow along with your analysis. And don’t forget to weave in your reaction to the work – after all, this is YOUR review! If you’re struggling to think of enough material, try looking for criticism online or in other reviews of the work. You can also go back and take another look at the work itself, paying close attention to areas that you found particularly interesting or confusing.

5. Write the Conclusion.

Firstly, an essay conclusion should sum up your main points and give a brief overview of the work you’ve been discussing. Secondly, it should offer your evaluation of the work. This is your chance to say whether you think it’s successful or not, and why. And finally, the conclusion should leave your reader with something to think about – a question, an issue to mull over, or a new perspective on the work in question. Writing a strong conclusion to your review essay is important because it gives your readers a final chance to appreciate all that they’ve learned from reading your paper.

Tips on writing a good review essay

A review essay examines a piece of writing, a film, or some other form of art, and offers a critical evaluation. The key to writing a good review essay is to maintain a consistent and accurate tone throughout the piece. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Be fair : it is important to offer a balanced view, even if you did not enjoy the work under discussion.
  • Be specific : when referring to particular scenes or aspects of the work, always be as specific as possible. This will give your argument more weight.
  • Research : This includes reading other reviews as well as gathering information from experts on the subject. third, take your time when writing the essay
  • Avoid summarizing : while it is helpful to provide some context, your essay should not simply be a plot summary. Instead, focus on offering critical analysis.
  • Stay on topic : make sure that each point you make is relevant to the main argument of your essay. stray too far from the main theme and you risk losing your reader’s attention.

Review Essay Writing Help

No matter how good you are at writing essays, there will always be a time when you need essay writing help . This is where Tutlance comes in. Tutlance is an online learning platform that connects students with expert tutors. Whether you need help with brainstorming, editing, proofreading, or essay review, our fast essay writers can provide the assistance you need to get a great grade. And because we only work with experienced tutors, you can be confident that you’ll receive high-quality help. So if you’re ever stuck on an essay, don’t hesitate to reach out to Tutlance for all academic writing and homework help online . We’re here to make sure that you succeed.

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A Film Review

Updated 27 April 2023

Subject Hero ,  Movies

Downloads 46

Category Entertainment ,  Life

Topic Community ,  Film Analysis ,  Moral

When you watch a movie or video, you get muddled information and thoughts about the actions and conditions presented. In most cases, characters in films act in unusual ways to depict human character, community morals, justice, and injustice, among other things. Most filmmakers' first objective is to evoke people's imaginations when they watch their films and connect them to real-life circumstances. People engage their imaginations in generating notions of what they believe is right and bad based on their cultural concept of morals when they watch movies. The majority of the ideas go beyond the realms of justice, race, and human nature. For a proper understanding, Gillian Flynn’s film, originally existing as a book is analyzed. The film focuses on two major characters, Amy (Rosamund Pike) and Nick Dune (Ben Affleck). This paper gives the details of the film, relates the occurrences to human imagination, and uses the concepts as an explanation of human nature, race, justice and accountability. Nick and Amy are planning their fifth anniversary. When he comes home in one evening, a day before their anniversary, he does not find the finds. He is not sure of anything that transpired. He sets on a mission to look for her but gets unlucky when the police investigations link the murder to him. There are blood spots out of the house, as a pointer of a potential scuffle and use of weapons. This is worrying because in Amy’s social spheres, there was no source of threats to her life that could act as a guide on the possible mission of finding out the killer. The media is becoming attentive and visiting Nick frequently, giving the issue a serious concern. Later, Amy is found, probably sad and mad about an unfaithful husband, who is making them lose their marital paradise because of the immoral behavior a husband should not have. Late, they manage to solve the issues and come together again. Throughout the film, imagination is unavoidable. Nick, as he finds the wife away imagines of the possible causes of problems, the police point to him as the murderer, while the wife is somewhere, trying to frame him. Any individual in or out of such a situation must imagine the consequences of these three dependent events. The issues coming to someone’s mind are the unfortunate world and fate that can rock, unexpectedly. One imagines what methods he or she can use to solve these problems. These are from cause to effect, taking a symbolic journey from what the eye sees to what the interpretation. If one was in such a situation, it may have been different and bear different consequences. Nature of humanity comes from the film. It is not easy to forget the experiences that Nick is going through. From the day Amy disappears, most people knew the husband was responsible. It is because all the research indicated that he was the murderer. However, it becomes a different and incomprehensible story when issues emerge that the wife used the opportunity to frame him. These are not light, in the scales of moral values one should have. It is the nature of human beings to be in anger, but when it gets to this severe level to the use of illegal means as a solution, the questions about human nature comes in mind. It is unfathomable how the wife, who loved him, has stayed with him decided to harm his image. All the events were because of the imagined likelihood of infidelity. More events like their reconciliation indicate how easy it was to solve the problems, but weird ways led to problems. It shows how human beings can be irrational in their decisions at times. Justice in the films features in the murder case. The framing, the police investigations and later the revelation of the framing by Amy are pointers to cases of injustice. The police officers are investigating the case to find who killed Amy. It is their mandate, owed to the country’s political system and governance. He is almost meeting misfortune when all indicators are that he is the murderer. It can be demoralizing and put the political regime into question if he goes to jail over the lie peddled by little investigations and overconcentration of the media on his case. The issue of justice relates closely to the accountability of the characters. Nick needs to be accountable for his role in their marriage. Amy doubts the husband’s faithfulness and demands a restoration of the lost marriage paradise. On the other hand, she must account for the reasons of her invariable misconduct to betray the husband. It is natural in the current days for people to betray each other within marriage. Such occurrences in marriage are unfortunate and make their lives even more sophisticated. Finally, the issues of morals, what is right and wrong is evident in the movie. First, if it is true that Nick was not faithful in their marriage, then it points to the first source of immoral behavior. Most cultures demand that people remain loyal to the wedding vows, and play their roles of partnerships. Amy also faces moral questions and needs some investigation over the possible conduct, which does not portray real partnership in marriage. It is unfortunate she plans to solve problems using irrational methods end up in the betrayal of a possible murder. The imaginations of human beings in the issues above dwell in the good and bad. They invite feelings differently, depending on either the experience or circumstances people are in. It also encompasses the society to gauge the good and bad. The attention given to the murder case and proceedings are showing the seriousness of the problems and issues the state has for the people. These imaginations change when it emerges that it was all a revenge mission when Amy alleges the betrayal of the husband and later sets him. Variance exists on the wrong and right, analyses the conduct of the different people and creates a complicated situation for the individuals. As Flynn (2012) records, Amy and Nick are friends, which may get to a worse level if they do not solve these hazy issues facing them. In conclusion, the story in the movie, Gone Girl by Gillian reminds most viewers of the needs for human rationalism as they handle different situations. The events range from making people imagine the changes person experiences in their environment, social setting and people close to them. Amy disappears, Nick is under investigations, but the information comes later that it was a set up by Amy. Police officers want him to take responsibility and be accountable, while Amy must also indicate the reasons for her behavior. These issues change and take different turns and twists in their portrayal of the human character and the needs for proper conduct, justice, accountability among others. Any viewer who watches the movie gets an insight and imagination of these concepts about humanity and makes a judgment of his or her own. Bibliography Flynn, Gillian. (2012). The Gone Girl. New York, NY: Crown. Kemonde, M. (2014, October 24). Gone girl review-two different readings of a modern marriage. Retrieved from different-readings-modern-marriage

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essay a film review

Quick Guide on How to Write a Movie Review Essay

essay a film review

What Is a Movie Review

The internet has revolutionized the realm of film criticism. No matter a movie's level of quality, it is always worth analyzing. Despite the growing number of individuals attempting to write about movies, few are successful. Most people do not provide insightful analysis, instead simply state how much they liked or disliked the film.

A movie criticism, usually composed by a professional in film studies, takes a comprehensive look at the film from a historical, social, political, or theoretical standpoint. This is unlike the opinion or suggestion given in a movie review, which is shorter and more concise.

A remarkable aspect of a good film review is that it doesn't just rate the movie but provides explicit views that form the critique's basis. This form of writing, like crafting essays, research papers, and term papers, should be insightful and draw the reader in quickly. It's important to discuss the reputation of the lead actors and directors and to write about what you expected and if they were met. The reviewer must explain a story's development without recalling major plot points and endings. The review must be concise, engaging, and should involve metaphors, specific words, analogies, etc.

Movie Review Purpose

Most film reviews are intended to guide readers in deciding whether to view, rent, or purchase the film. They should provide the necessary information to aid readers in deciding without divulging any fundamental details, such as the storyline or any surprises. This paper is common in schools because the lecturer wants to evaluate the student's ability to think critically and report the event easily for others to understand.

Movie reviews typically present a brief summary of the film's storyline. They provide readers with an overview of the characters, relationships, and scenarios but do not convey the complete narrative. Perusing the review should be different from seeing the movie. Nonetheless, feel free to highlight the essential moments or pivotal points that make the film worthwhile viewing.

Our college paper writing service has put together some advice on composing a movie review essay like a real critic, so let's explore the article further!

How to Write a Movie Review: Movie Review Outline

The structure is key when it comes to the quality of your paper. Don't neglect the power of a good outline, no matter what paper you're writing. Outlines help you stay on track and make sure your paper flows well.

Taking the time to arrange your ideas before starting to write is an effective way to save time further down the line. With a well-structured plan already in place, you won't have to worry about other elements. This will also make the writing process less stressful. Here is a guide on how to organize your movie review outline:

Writing a Movie Review_ Step-by-Step Guide

How Do You Start a Movie Review Essay: Introduction

The introductory paragraph is the first obvious step in crafting a movie review essay outline. Here, you want to quickly captivate the reader. Deliver your viewpoint instantly and make it unambiguous. Don't leave the audience wondering whether you enjoyed the film. Tell them right off the bat so you have time to justify your assessment throughout the remainder of the process.

In the introduction movie review should also describe your thesis. Develop the main concept for your essay that you can support using your perceptions of the movie's various aspects. The reader should be able to tell from this statement if you thought the film was fantastic, awful, or simply alright. By including a thesis statement, you may move your analysis beyond the plot synopsis phase into the movie critique category, which is considered a separate creative process.

Crafting Your Essay Movie Review Analysis

According to our research paper service , film analysis is similar to building a case. You're attempting to influence the reader to follow your recommendation to watch or disregard the film. So, you must ensure your essay movie review will be convincing. Giving instances that demonstrate the validity of your personal opinion is the only method to do this. If you find any dialogue in the movie that you think best exemplifies whether the work is strong or not, utilize quotes. This also applies to all of the movie's artistic decisions. But, just because a movie's narrative isn't strong or engaging doesn't indicate the rest of the film is worthless. Carefully highlight how some factors might undermine the movie in your explanation.

The movie's plot is only one component and shouldn't dominate the overall piece. The following are the important aspects to include in your movie review structure:

Cinematography - Cinematography covers much more than simply camera angles. It includes how the picture is lit, how it moves, appears, and what lenses are used. Here you can try the following analysis: 'Warm, gentle colors are used throughout the film, combined with soothing whites and grays, to simultaneously create and gradually tear away the characters' romantic sentiments for one another. There is a painting-like quality to each image.'

Editing - The editing is arguably the absolute star of what creates a good movie review example. It affects both the duration and the flow of a movie. Without effective editing, there would be uncomfortable gaps between pictures and many errors.

Costuming - The clothing the characters wear is called a costume, but there are a number of things to consider while evaluating movie costumes. You should be able to decide if the outfits suit the characters and the movie's atmosphere.

Casting and Acting - Finding the ideal performers to bring characters to life is the goal of casting. This sometimes entails seeing performers portray both familiar personas and figures who are entirely at odds with who they are. Casting, therefore, involves more than just finding talented performers. You can assess the acting in the following way: 'Even though he excels while on the go, his stoic behaviorism causes him to fall short of his co-star during calm scenes where he keeps a blank look on his face.'

Once you have finished analyzing the acting, directing, cinematography, setting, etc., wrap up with concise, stimulating wording to sustain readers' attention. Don't forget to provide a few examples to support your statements about the film.

Concluding Your Essay Movie Review

Finalize your review by coming full circle. Close the review by returning to your introductory fact or thesis. Give your readers a refresher on the movie's most intriguing aspects. It's important to remember that before choosing a movie, viewers check reviews. Finish with a statement indicating whether it is worthwhile for them to view. Be specific about who this movie will be more fascinating to and why in your suggestions. Remember that your ending is your last shot at influencing your audience, so use it wisely.

No matter the kind of movie review you have to complete, our professional specialists are willing to help you. Directly forward your needs to our research paper service and get it done quickly.


No matter what type of movie review you want, our qualified specialists are ready to assist you.

Short Movie Review Form

If you are currently working on a new or old movie review, reading our suggestions should be sufficient to help you earn an A. So what if you'll be writing many reviews in the future? In this situation, we advise you to develop a uniform movie review template, which will enable you to save time and complete your upcoming projects successfully.

So, how to write a movie review template, you may ask? Well, our essay helper prepared a simple yet great movie review template you may use as a foundation for your own writing if you need some help getting started:

movie review form

Example Papers

Once you know how to review a movie and learn the most valuable tips to handle this assignment, it is time to look at some movie review examples to get you on the right track.

Check out the following pieces to see which of these movie review essay examples you might want to keep at hand when working on your own assignment:

FAQs on Writing an Essay Movie Review

Here are the most frequently asked questions on how to write a movie review. We provided extra details on movie analysis to simplify writing film reviews.

What are the 6 Important Things to Include in a Film Review?

The following six elements should be present in any film review:

  • A plot summary - Here, you should provide the movie title, its release date, the key members of the cast, the filmmaker or producer, and its subject matter.
  • Your original impression - Here, you should discuss your initial impressions before seeing the movie and contrast them with how you felt afterward.
  • Commentary on the acting - As was previously said, you can evaluate the actors' onscreen performance in the specific movie here. You can also talk about how it stacks up against the movies the actors have appeared in.
  • Analysis of technical elements - You can describe camera methods, lighting, color, editing, sound, and audio, among other things.
  • An evaluation of the film's overall success -Here, you should evaluate if the movie accomplished its goals, whether the messages it was intended to convey were clearly understood, or whether they were lost in translation.
  • Your final recommendation - This summarizes both the critic's last observation and the film's overall message or what we may learn from it. Finally, you should inform the reader if they should watch the movie and what aspects they may or may not enjoy.

How Long Should a Movie Review Be?

Generally, film reviews range from 600 to 1200 words, though there is no particular format that must be followed. Yet, usually, a movie review format includes the following:

  • Introduction
  • Plot Summary
  • Description
  • Conclusion/Evaluation

Before starting your movie review writing, do a lot of research. You might want to spend some time familiarizing yourself with the director's, writer's, or actor's body of work before watching the movie, which will take you longer than creating the narrative.

What are the 5 C's in Film?

One may argue that the five C's of cinematography, as described by Joseph V. Mascelli, are fundamental ideas necessary to create a movie. To guarantee the finest possible quality, every idea must be carefully taken into account when creating, filming, and editing a movie.

  • Camera Angles - A scene may be set up for viewers to follow by strategically placing the camera and using visual clues to show how actors relate to one another, their surroundings, and the actions on the screen.
  • Continuity - A realistic visual experience is made possible by fluid internal logic. On the other hand, viewers will struggle to follow the plot if scenes are inconsistent graphically. Moreover, continuity errors can destroy a scene's emotional resonance.
  • Cutting - Sensible trimming may advance the story when it is meticulously planned, with insight and forethought. It is important to connect each shot in a scene and the scenes themselves so that their overall impact, rather than just their separate elements, elicits the intended emotions from the spectator.
  • Close-ups - The addition of close-ups may significantly alter a scenario. Viewers can be encouraged to feel intense feelings together with the characters on screen, even without language.
  • Composition - Lighting, color, space, mood, and tone are some of the components that make up a cinematic scene. This is particularly intriguing because the composition may draw attention to a movie's topic and represent the cinematography style of both the filmmaker and the cinematographer.

Helpful Tips on Writing Movie Reviews

Here are some extra helpful tips to keep in mind when unsure how to write a movie review essay:

Mistakes to Avoid While Making a Movie Review

  • Add Your Own Personal Feel to Your Movie Critique - You might not have much spare time for your pastime of reviewing. You won't be able to write a movie review, though, if you just wing it without reading what others have said. Make a note of the things that intrigued you, alarmed you, made you uncomfortable, or caused you to pause and consider something, and then use that list as the basis for your research.
  • Develop a Distinctive Writing Style - Have an idol—it's good for you. You must be careful not to just paraphrase and duplicate what they say without adding your own original viewpoint. Instead, in order to stand out from the throng, you must discover your own voice. When writing movie reviews, you should also have a distinct writing style.
  • Include Extensive Information -Mention the film's photographer, special effects designer, and director. Your review might be significantly impacted by this. Then you may list all the memorable movie moments that also stuck with you.
  • Voice Your Views and Back Up Your Criticism - Give your own assessment of the film. Make sure you have evidence to support your criticisms. Use the movie's details that most shocked or humiliated you. Review genuine information rather than merely expressing your opinions without supporting details.

Final Thoughts

Composing a good movie review essay sample is easy if you follow this article's main steps and techniques. Furthermore, we strongly believe that this guide will assist you in achieving remarkable outcomes and ease your writing process. The staff at EssayPro is always available to provide a helping hand if you need a little additional push with movie review examples or even if it's simply coming up with a catchy essay title .

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6 Step Guide On How To Write a Movie Review

27 Dec 2021

Quick Navigation

❓ What is a Movie Review Essay?

📽 Main Features of Movie Review Essay

🎞 Components of Movie Review

🎬 6 Steps to Write a Movie Review Essay

✔ Tips On How To Write a Movie Review Essay

Cinema represents a different way of facing reality for a whole society. Through the seventh art, it is possible to address issues and write important discussions to the world. In this way, we see the importance of movie review essays to foster these discussions and generate different interpretations of the works.

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What is a Movie Review Essay?

A review is a text that conveys a person's thoughts about specific content. It can be a book ( literature review ), film (movie critique), or text if the writer takes an analytical approach to this format. In the reviews, points of view are presented on the content of a given work, its aesthetics, its intention, and the context of its production, among other aspects.

A movie review assignment is one of the most common activities found within universities. However, many people need to learn how to start the writing process and develop a good review based on their opinion of a particular film. That's why many people are looking for how to buy college essays . Today you can learn how to write a film review.

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Main Features of Movie Review Essay

As we have seen, criticism is an opinionated text whose main resource is the construction of arguments in defense of its thesis about some movies. Be it positive or negative concerning a certain movie. The main components present and how to write a critical review are:

  • Conciseness: in predominantly argumentative texts such as the movie reviews, it is important to say only the essentials, avoid repetitions and excess information, and always be a critic of the subject.
  • Denotative language: in a critical movie review, the denotative language prevails; that is, it avoids leaving doubts to the reader about the arguments and the thesis defended, always using literal language to explain your vision.
  • Use of the language's standard norm: the critical review of movies is usually published in large circulation vehicles, printed or digital, and, therefore, must follow the formal grammar rules.

Components of Movie Review

How to review a movie? The text's structure generally includes a title, introduction, development, and conclusion. All these parts are significant while writing critical analysis essay . In the title, it is crucial always to quote the film's name and anticipate the analysis to generate curiosity in whoever reads your essay. In the first paragraph, it is important to make a plot summary while writing film reviews. Already in development, the author should expose his arguments to defend his vision of that film. And finally, it is essential to leave a statement of impact and the recommendation (or not) of that work.

The content of writing movie reviews should contain the main subject of the film, the characters, and the place where the story takes place. In addition, it is crucial to list the analyzed film's plots and the story's dynamics.

The author of the essay should always remember to contextualize the analyzed film. Mention the main characters and their relationships with the plot and other characters, parts of the script that don't make much sense or shouldn't be there, and generate a discussion about the film's central message.

Now talking about the form of writing a film review, the review must seek to address all the factors that make that story becomes a movie. That is, to bring all formal or aesthetic components into your essay. Expressing your thoughts on sound mixing, cinematography, script, lighting, costume and make-up, editing, etc., is important.

6 Steps to Write a Movie Review Essay

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Editors on PapersOwl can edit your paper and give recommendations on how to improve your writing:

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Watch a film and make notes

Before writing a movie review, the first step is to watch the analyzed movie. It is also important to note the main topics that should be addressed in the future when writing your essay. This is the main phase in the process of creating a review. Be quick to rewatch the film as many times as necessary to form more consistent and accurate thoughts about the project.

Gather the main facts about the film

The next step in an essay movie review is to find technical characteristics and curiosities about the film. There are several things you can look for and should know about the movie in question, for example:

  • Title and year;
  • Names of the main actors;
  • Director's name;
  • Title of book (if based on a book).

It's important always to put this information in your essay movie review to inform your readers consistently and helpfully.

Make a review outline

You should start writing all the ideas for your essay on paper, making an outline with opinions and important parts of the film that should be included in your review. Or you also can use or write a movie review template. You can refer to this draft to remember all critical topics in your movie review outline when writing the text.

Structure your text properly

That is the movie review structure:

  • Introduction –  For movie reviews, start your text with some hook or curious fact to bring the reader's attention to the movie. You can describe an impactful scene or some quote that marked you during the experience. Also, don't forget to contextualize and bring a brief summary of the film.
  • Body - This is the most important part of an essay about a movie. You must bring all the notes and impressions you recorded while watching that film. However, it is important to bring a concise, informative, and meaningful approach to a review of a film. Tell the facts you liked the most, the reasons, and those parts you didn't like, and exemplify them.
  • Conclusion - Finalize your work so that it seems to make sense, and has logic and purpose. In conclusion, in your essay on a movie, you will be able to make an overview, issue your final thoughts and consequently recommend (or not) that film. You can also indicate which target audience the movie will work best for.

Write your text

Start writing your review based on the draft you've already made. However, this time, we used the correct script and movie review format we mentioned earlier. Another significant thing is not to talk only about the plot, as it can often be subjective. You should address other film features to make your review more complete and attractive. That's how to write!

Here are some tips for things to cover in your film analysis:

  • You will be able to discuss how the actors act and match the proposed role.
  • Talk about the soundtrack and how it relates to the main plot in your essay writing.
  • Camera movements and directing characteristics specific to that director in question.
  • Image, light, and cinematography.
  • You can still address other things that caught your attention while watching that movie.

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Proofread what you have.

If you want quality text and are wondering how to do essay for me or review, it is important to pay attention to the review writing, proofreading, and editing part of the text. Better than that is to find someone with good grammar skills to help you at this time and check if your text fits in the movie review format. This is because when two people read the same text, it is easier to find errors that have yet to be noticed.

During the final editing of the text, it is also imperative to pay attention to the following:

  • In not giving spoilers about the outcome of the film;
  • Analyze whether the appropriate review format was used;
  • Check how original is your essay writing;

At this stage, it is very important to seek help from other people and thus have a more prudent and higher-quality review. The final process will be to identify the errors, fix them and make the text more correct and polished. It's always good to read many good movie review examples for college students so that you can get used to this type of text.

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Tips On How To Write a Movie Review Essay

How to start an introduction for a movie review? Well, when writing a cinematic review, it is important to pay attention to several factors in how to write it. It is also a very time-consuming process that demands calm and attention from the person writing it. If necessary, the author must rewatch the film as often as required to weave a valid opinion with sound arguments and movie analysis. However, even if it seems to be a challenging job, it is important not to give up during the process, as it will impact your learning and academic performance.

We know it is challenging to keep up with all the academic duties. However, it is important to always set aside time, especially for these techniques tasks. Organization and commitment are qualities often lacking in contemporary students, leading them to frustration for not being able to develop this critique work.

If you have problems doing a review, know there is a solution by using the PapersOwl article writing service, with a team of trained writers with extensive experience in developing academic texts. Many times even the most innovative writers need to buy research paper . Therefore, everyone who needs help with analysis tasks like this will always have support.

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essay a film review

Movie Reviews

Tv/streaming, collections, great movies, chaz's journal, contributors, the unloved, part 119: our mother's house.

essay a film review

The 119th Unloved is on a bonafide forgotten gem. " Our Mother's House " is the kind of movie that only a small number of initiated viewers have heard of, let alone seen, but everyone who has will be shaken by it for the rest of their lives. 

Next month marks the tenth anniversary of this little video essay series, and I figured it was time to reach for something that should have been monumental. 

Scout Tafoya

Scout Tafoya

Scout Tafoya is a critic and filmmaker who writes for and edits the arts blog Apocalypse Now and directs both feature length and short films.

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The Holdovers

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Simon abrams.

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All the Light We Cannot See

Marya e. gates.


Why Isn’t Cat Person About “Cat Person”?

Something went very, very wrong here — and I think I know why.

The movie Cat Person is, I am told — by friends, by the filmmakers, by IMDb — based on the short story “Cat Person”: writer Kristen Roupenian’s fictional account of a no good, very bad date that went viral upon its publication in the New Yorker in 2017. Indeed, the movie poster is a close-up shot of co-stars Emilia Jones and Nicholas Braun, evoking the discomfiting photograph published alongside the original story, which haunted readers almost as much as the story itself . (That orange stubble… May we all, one day, be free from its prickly grasp.)

But if you read “Cat Person” and then watch Cat Person , it’s clear that the movie has only a passing resemblance to Roupenian’s story. Sure, the film centers on the ill-fated romance between Margot (Jones) and Robert (Braun), the former a University of Michigan sophomore and the latter a 30-something Ann Arbor townie. As in the story, they meet after Robert purchases Red Vines from Margot at the artsy movie theater where she works; after an extended text conversation, they eventually go on one (1) cringe-inducing proper date; and then they have terrible sex that Margot all but grits her teeth to get through. She then tells him it’s over via text.

The whole time, Margot struggles to get a clear picture of the frequently confusing, socially challenged Robert, often projecting her own narcissistic fantasies onto him. At the end of the story, he calls her a “whore” over text, revealing he’s just an asshole. At the end of the movie… Well, we’ll get to that.

After Roupenian’s short story was published, many smart people opined on its literary quality and the ethics of the inspiration for it . But whether it’s good or bad or ethical or unethical is somewhat beside the point. It went viral because it struck a nerve, and it struck a nerve because it got at something sticky about how we date now — or at least, how we dated in 2017.

It went viral because it struck a nerve, and it struck a nerve because it got at something sticky about how we date now — or at least, how we dated in 2017.

Women who date men have always been tasked with sorting the good guys from the bad ones, and the truly dangerous from the merely weird. Thanks to this unspoken, deeply unfair responsibility and the True Crime Industrial Complex™, just about all women will tell you that at one point they’ve gotten into a man’s car or entered his home and had the same passing thought as Margot: “He could take her someplace and rape and murder her.”

That doesn’t even account for the advent of texting and messaging apps, which have created a whole new relationship phase: the pre-date textuationship.

Love letters are nothing new, but the attempt to figure out who your correspondent even is , all while playing an elaborate epistolary game, definitely is — waiting just long enough to respond, refraining from double texting. It requires building, testing, and constantly refining a model of your partner in your head. And especially when you’re young like Margot and have only dated boys your age, you don’t have the necessary context to read a man in his 30s: Is this a good guy? A serial killer? If you want to like him, and are imagining who he could be — in Margot’s case, a sweet, if inexperienced guy who’s in awe of her youth and grateful for her attention — it’s easy to talk yourself into ending up at his house, because you already put in so much effort. And then into having sex that you don’t really want to have, because, well, you’re already at his house.

It’s easy to talk yourself into ending up at his house, because you already put in so much effort. And then into having sex that you don’t really want to have, because, well, you’re already at his house.

This whole setup ensures that sometimes you’ll get it wrong, that you’ll think a guy is just awkward when he’s actually the type of misogynist who’ll label you a “whore.” That message will give you whiplash, leaving you dazed, wondering how you could’ve talked yourself into sleeping with him in the first place.

It’s all interesting and uncomfortable to dig into — were it not, the story wouldn’t have found nearly as many readers.

The movie, on the other hand, immediately precludes the possibility that Robert is anything but predatory. In the very first scene, as he approaches Margot to buy those Red Vines, audio from what sounds like vintage horror movie trailers spills out from the theaters. Later, she hallucinates finding a mauled stray dog in her dorm as if in a warning and mysteriously gets trapped in a closet with Robert; at other points, her professor (Isabella Rossellini) explains the vicious sexual dynamics between ants and other creatures. Throughout, the dialogue beats in the message with all the subtlety of a 10-piece band: It’s so dangerous to be a woman in a man’s world! [Warning: Spoilers for Cat Person ahead.]

This comes to an inevitably violent conclusion in the final act. Margot, convinced without much evidence that Robert is stalking her, breaks into his garage to place a tracker on his car. One thing leads to another, and the two get into a physical fight, during which a fire is accidentally started. To save their lives, they hide under a hatch in the basement. After firefighters put out the blaze, they discover Robert and Margot under the hatch, barely alive; by the time Margot comes to in the hospital, Robert has already left town without a trace.

A still from 'Cat Person.'

And so, what made the story go viral in the first place — the destabilizing, sometimes-degrading experience of dating in a post-text world — is recast as a muddled, nuance-free tale about the perils of being a woman.

I have a theory about what went wrong here: horror brain worms. The same year “Cat Person” was published, Get Out unleashed horror brain worms on the public — brain worms that had less to do with the movie itself, which was very good, and more to do with how it changed the perception of horror as a genre. Suddenly, everyone realized that you could use horror as a tool for social commentary — despite the fact that horror auteurs had been doing this for decades. It took Get Out to get the idea in to public consciousness.

The brain worms cleared the way for some great films . (I like to imagine them eating the fear of “getting political” out of executives’ heads.) But they also gave us Men , a movie that dares to say “men can be scary to women.” They gave us Bad Hair , which Bitch aptly labeled a “superficial finger wag” of a movie. They gave us False Positive , a borderline inscrutable movie about IVF gone horribly awry that’s also thematically tied to Peter Pan somehow.

Sometimes a movie doesn’t need blood and guts and murder and screaming. Sometimes it’s more bone-chilling to watch a college sophomore stumble through a disastrous sexual encounter, to hear her inner monologue as she wonders why she went through with it at all: “At last, after a frantic rabbity burst, he shuddered, came, and collapsed on her like a tree falling, and, crushed beneath him, she thought, brightly, ‘This is the worst life decision I have ever made!’”

Thirty minutes in a room with a knife-wielding ghoul is scary. Thirty minutes inside the head of a mildly delusional, semi-infatuated college girl who increasingly sounds like me? Let’s just say I’d take the ghoul any day.

essay a film review

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essay a film review

The Ultimate Guide To Writing A Movie Review Essay

Movie Review Writing Featured Image

  • What is a Movie Review

Film review outline

  • Purpose of writing movie review
  • Step by Step process on how to write movie review
  • Mistakes to avoid when composing movie review

Are you attempting to write a movie review essay? Despite its popularity, most students often fail to compose an engaging and well-constructed review essay. That’s because the majority of the students lack reporting skills, which is crucial to writing a film review essay. 

Furthermore, writing a movie analysis essay gets tricky because students must consider several additional factors exclusive to film analysis. Although writing a review is not very difficult, it has its peculiarities that must be kept in mind. This article will educate you on writing an excellent movie review essay and avoiding common errors.

But, before going through the steps, let us cover some basic concepts such as – what is a movie review? What is the primary purpose of writing a movie review essay, and how to compose a review essay outline?

What is a Movie Review?

A movie review is a thorough analysis of a film or documentary and belongs to the genre of journalism and art criticism. It entails methodical analysis, research, and structured reporting of the writer’s opinions. In short, it is a complex overview of a movie by the writer.

Whether or not the reader has seen the film, the writer assumes the role of educating them. In fact, many individuals read movie reviews before deciding whether or not to see a film.  

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Thus, when a student is given a movie review essay assignment, it tests their critical thinking and reporting abilities. The task further assesses their ability to write logically, concisely, lucidly, and creatively.

Note: Please remember that the movie review essay from a professional reviewer will be more detailed, informative, and structured than the amateur reviewer. So, if you cannot write like a professional, do not fret, but practice more so that you can achieve the expert’s level of writing.

We shall help you develop a concise and well-structured review in this post. Just follow our guide to writing an entertaining film review.

Developing an outline is crucial for writing essays, and a film review essay is no exception. An outline will assist you in correctly organizing your thoughts and help you write faster. Furthermore, it also assists you in covering all the main points that you intend to write about. 

Usually, an essay has three parts – introduction, body, and conclusion. The same will be applied to movie review essays too. However, the body section will have sub-divisions that discuss various aspects of the film. Below is the movie review outline that you can follow:


In this section, you must offer general information about the film, such as the title, release date, filmmakers, principal actors, film company, and budget.

This is a brief synopsis of the film’s plot, characters, and interactions.

Film analysis:

This section includes an analysis of the plot and creative elements of the movie and the topic or theme of the film

Plot elements analysis:

What is the starting or initial point of the movie, its rising action, and its climax? 

Creative elements analysis:

Here, various aspects such as characters, dialogue, camera techniques, and the use of colors are analyzed. Additionally, the symbols, mood, costumes, tone, and other elements are discussed. 

Topic/theme analysis and its implementation:

This section is concerned with the viewers’/audience’s understanding of the topic, its relevance, and comparison with other similar works.

This section deals with your point of view or opinion supported by examples and facts from the story.


Discuss whether the filmmaker was successful. Explain how the movie helped you better understand the course topic.

The purpose of writing a movie review

There are specific goals involved in writing a film review essay which we will below. Knowing the purpose of the review helps the reader understand the movie review better.

To discuss the plot briefly:

One can use it to share information about the movie characters, situations, twists, turning points, etc. briefly. However, it is never explained in elaborate detail.

To analyze the movie:

Reviews are used to analyze a few aspects of the movie, such as the director’s work, acting, music, theme, and special effects. It presents an objective view of the movie.

Opinion sharing:

You can share your opinion by specifying what you like or dislike about the movie using reviews. This helps the audience to understand and make a decision about the movie.

Provide recommendations:

A review is a perfect gateway to express what the audience can expect from the movie. In fact, most reviewers analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the movie and usually pass a verdict on it by recommending or not recommending it.

For entertainment:

One cannot deny the factor that reviews can be entertaining and quite engaging. So you may write a review just for fun and entertainment.

Step by Step process on how to write a movie review

Writing a movie review entails more than simply urging people to watch or avoid a film. It includes several procedures that, when completed, result in a thorough review. A rough outline of the procedures are as given below:

  • Watch the movie
  • Make notes on what you saw
  • Production design
  • Cinematography
  • Screenwriting
  • Editing 
  • Construct your opinion

The steps mentioned above are not really complicated, but writing a movie review has its quirks that need to be handled well. Here are the points that a good film review should have:

  • Bibliographic information about the movie
  • Concise characterization
  • Plot description without spoilers
  • Description of leading actors and other key characters
  • Evaluation of the movie theme, setting, conflicts, etc. in detail
  • Comparison with other similar movies
  • An overall analysis of the movie

Note: Before composing a film review, it is necessary to know proper movie review formatting. You must know how to organize the content in the proper format, structure, style, and formatting. Here are the steps to writing an effectual film review:

Select a movie:

It is possible that you might be assigned a movie to review. However, if you have the option to choose, carefully consider which film you want to evaluate. Although most of us would undoubtedly select one of our favorites, you may write about one you dislike and explain why. This approach could be refreshing and earn you extra marks.

Watch the movie:

Even if you’ve seen a movie in the past, watch it again to uncover new subtleties and better understand the characters and their motivations. Viewing a film at least twice, preferably three times, is recommended. 

That’s because one usually focuses on the major characters, storyline, and emotions in the first watch. A second watch helps the reviewer notice tiny character and story nuances, such as music, costumes, and other aspects. All of these factors affect your perception of the movie and critique.

Compile notes:

Make a note of things you notice in the movie. Please list all the ideas that come to mind while watching the movie or once you are done seeing it.

Conduct research:

Learn everything you can about the movie as much as possible. Is it a retelling, a news story, or a remake? Did the book inspire the plot of the movie? What was the budget of the movie? How has the film’s cast evolved over the process? Choose 2 or 3 of the most remarkable production facts and encompass them in your work.

It is recommended that you know a little bit about the film’s background so that you will be able to enjoy it more. Moreover, if you don’t understand the movie, you can’t proceed to the following level, which entails analysis. Ensure that the following will be researched well:

  • Lead actors names
  • Director name
  • Book title (if based on a book)

Analyze the movie:

Consider everything you watched in the movie and form an opinion on it. Is there any social context in the movie? What was the film’s original concept/subject, and how efficient were the producers in putting it into action? Please take note of how it was shot and what techniques were used. 

Always start your analysis once you understand the movie entirely. Examine the film critically from beginning to conclusion, noting every aspect. If you noticed any puzzling parts when analyzing, re-watch to grasp the notion presented there correctly. To create an effective movie analysis, you must first comprehend how to write a film critique.

Draft an outline:

Create an overview of your work before writing the honest movie review to structure all of your thoughts and arguments. That’s because the overview will assist you in organizing your review concisely and logically. 

In short, the outline acts as a skeletal framework for the entire review that helps improve the quality of the film review. You can refer to the movie review outline given in the above section. 

Come up with a catchy title:

Always try to develop interesting titles for your reviews. My review for XYZ’s movie sounds bland. However, a catchy title creates a positive impression and makes the reader curious about what you want to say about a specific movie. 

Enhance the review with examples:

Your observations mentioned in the review must be supported with examples. For instance, you can mention certain scenes where the incident occurred. You can point out poorly formed characters, and plots backed up with examples. In short, document your analysis in the film review.

Compose your review:

After completing your research and preparing your outline, it’s time to put it all together and write a review. Arrange all of your ideas and arguments that stick to the outline you created earlier. 

Create a general synopsis of the film so that the audience/readers can understand what challenges can arise from it. However, don’t give away the ending because they may not have seen it yet. Write down the main elements you liked and disliked. 

Use evidence and examples to corroborate your points. Comment on the film’s originality and equate it with others in the same genre, on the same theme, or directed by the same person.

Make each section simple and exciting to read. Compose an interesting introduction that grabs the reader’s attention. Have a spectacular and solid opening that keeps the reader hooked to your review. Continue the body section in the same manner and keep it informative and engaging to the audience. Do not make it overly biased, and don’t use a preachy tone. 

Finally, connect the conclusion with the introduction and present your view on the movie without being too vague. The reader must never be confused about your point of view.

Edit and proofread the draft:

Once done with writing the review, take a break or a little break before rereading it. This helps you to come back with a fresh mind and outlook. Review the draft and check for grammatical errors, formatting errors, sequence of presentation, compliance with the outline, and professor’s demands.

Check the word count and reduce them if they are too many; if not, add relevant content to make them up. Make no unnecessary additions for the sake of writing. Ensure that your final draft is completely polished, well-edited, free of plagiarism, and submitted in the recommended format or style.

Mistakes to avoid when composing a movie review

Now that you understand how to write a movie review be aware of some common mistakes that you must avoid. We have combined a list of mistakes that you can refer to when composing your review.

Giving out spoilers:

You may now know that spoilers are not usually included in movie reviews. However, some reviews may require you to give out spoilers. In cases such as these, never forget to include a warning. 

Several reviews warn that they contain spoilers at the beginning. Forgetting to include this warning is one of the fundamental mistakes that may not sit well with your readers. Thus, just enclose a warning in bold and large font so that the reader will know whether to proceed or not.

Skip retelling the story:

The primary purpose of the movie review is to give an opinion on the movie. So, retelling the whole movie doesn’t meet the purpose of the review. As a review writer, you have to be critical in your review but not descriptive. 

Please note that introducing the characters, briefing the plot, and analyzing the technical aspects is good, but revealing the story from beginning to end is simply incorrect.

Limit your comparison:

Some reviews go on and on about how the film varies or is similar to the source material. This may work for people who have already read the book; however, it doesn’t agree with those who haven’t read it. Try not to be affected by the similarities between the source and the film.

Not conducting proper research:

You should always conduct comprehensive research before starting the review. If you ignore this section, you risk giving the readers incorrect interpretations and leading them astray. 

Do not get too personal:

A film review should strive to provide an analytical summary. It is unavoidable to be slightly subjective. You should, however, avoid becoming too personal. It will damage the reading experience of the readers. 

All things considered, writing a review is not a cakewalk, but it is not overly tricky too. Just follow the tips given in this post as a reference. Refer to the outline and steps given in this post to compose a watertight movie review that is informative and engaging.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 7 basic steps to writing a movie review?

The 7 steps to writing an effective movie review are – watching the movie, compiling notes, researching the movie, analyzing the movie, drafting the outline, composing a review, and proofreading the review. 

What is the movie review format?

The movie review format is the map to compose a well-structured film review. It helps improve the quality of the movie review and simplifies the process of writing it. Here is the format of the movie review that you can follow:

  • Introduction
  • Film analysis
  • Opinion on the movie

What makes a good movie review?

Several essential elements make a good movie review that can earn you appreciation by your readers when included. You must include the plot, summary, analysis of the movie (including technical aspects), 

How do you write a movie criticism?

To write a movie critique, you should use the same processes and tactics described in this article about writing a movie review. This term is frequently used interchangeably with the word “film review.” A movie criticism, in a nutshell, is a peer-reviewed erudite study that analyzes and assesses films and their medium.

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Bayard Rustin, leader of the March on Washington, poses for a photo in New York.

Bayard Rustin review: fine portrait of a giant of protest and politics

Michael G Long edits essays from 23 authors on the great civil rights advocate, newly in the spotlight thanks to the Obamas

A t only about 200 pages, Bayard Rustin: A Legacy of Protest and Politics is a pleasure to read, 23 contributors giving their take on the great civil rights advocate. Edited by the scholar Michael G Long, it is a must for those who want to better understand the complexity of a Black hero who was also an imperfect man.

Rustin, the Obama-produced feature film airing on Netflix, is the most prominent example an industry of emergent Rustin scholarship. A spate of Rustin essays, Rustin books and Rustin docuseries round out the genre. They commemorate the 60th anniversary of Rustin’s foremost achievement: the March on Washington of 1963, a great protest for African American civil and economic rights.

The Civil Rights Acts of 1964 was among its results. Long explains how, with this peaceful demonstration as a template, “millions of protesters … would similarly march on Washington for women’s rights, labor rights, LGBTQ+ rights, and so much more. No protest in US history has been more influential and consequential.”

What is it that makes the book Long has edited so special? It is its economy. Without spending a long time, from several angles you get a good picture of who Rustin was.

I never met Rustin, but I did meet and was befriended by Walter Naegle. Legally adopted by Rustin so no one could contest his eventual bequest, in any real sense Naegle is Rustin’s widower. They met in 1977 and were together for the final decade of Rustin’s life.

“He had a wonderful shock of white hair,” Naegle writes. “I guess he was of my parents’ generation, but we looked at each other and lightning struck.”

When he moved to New York in the late 1930s, Rustin joined the 15th Street Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends. Any source one consults emphasizes how imperative his Quaker upbringing was. He was reared not by his unmarried teenaged mother but by his maternal grandmother. Her beliefs inspired his highly moral sense of ethics.

Naegle writes: “Bayard always credited Julia [Edith Davis Rustin] with having the most profound impact on his early development. She attended West Chester, Pennsylvania’s Friends School. Her education stressed ‘human family oneness, equality, integrity, community, and peace through nonviolence’. It was this Quaker nonviolence, enhanced by Gandhi’s version, that Rustin studied in India, which he taught to Rev Martin Luther King. This was how King’s movement changed history.”

I always assumed that as a boy Rustin followed a trajectory similar to that followed by his grandmother. I envisioned him interacting with white Quakers with ease. But Naegle relates something else. When she married, Rustin’s grandmother joined her husband’s African Methodist Episcopal church. Notwithstanding the strong Quaker identity they shared, neither she nor Bayard were welcome to attend the West Chester Friends Meeting. Far from the “Peaceable Kingdom” I pictured, Rustin experienced a grimmer youth. Replete with racial segregation, there was even a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan.

All the same, Rustin’s Quaker beliefs led him to pacifism. A conscientious objector during the second world war, he received a two-year prison term. He sought to serve fellow inmates, organizing them to protest for better conditions. Earlier, at Wilberforce University, Rustin had been expelled for organizing students – and for being gay. Jail authorities didn’t hesitate to use his sexuality against him. To be queer was to be perceived as deviant and depraved. Confessing his sexuality to his grandmother, he had only been admonished: “Never associate with anyone who has less to lose than you do.” In prison it was a different matter. Black or white, on learning about Rustin’s sexuality, most prisoners wanted nothing to do with him.

Bayard Rustin speaks from the Lincoln Memorial, during the March on Washington in 1963.

Being deemed deviant and illegal haunted Rustin’s life well after his release in 1946. One friend stood by him steadfastly. A fellow socialist, Asa Philip Randolph, had established America’s first Black labor union, the International Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. Rustin’s capabilities as an organizer, orator and agitator impressed Randolph early. Their first big protest, a 1941 march on the capital, was canceled after Franklin Roosevelt desegregated war production contracts.

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By 1960, the worst sex scandal of all threatened to break into public. Envious, Harlem’s Black congressional representative demanded that King cancel a demonstration outside the Democratic National Convention. In his contribution to A Legacy of Protest and Politics, John d’Emilio tells us how the Rev Adam Clayton Powell Jr promised: “If King did not call off the protests … Powell would [claim] that King and Rustin were having a sexual affair. King immediately canceled the demonstrations.”

Three years later, before the March on Washington, Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina attempted to kill it by reading an old Rustin arrest into the record. It backfired. People laughed. Thanks to Randolph, Rustin was back. Some 250,000 people were safely transported to the Lincoln Memorial. The sound system worked and so did the portable toilets. Despite an overwhelming police presence, no one was shot.

Rustin was multifaceted but fallible. In this insightful book, several observers contend that no one else could have done as well. Others are impressed by how Rustin combated oppression and injustice around the world. He helped normalize radical solutions to enduring problems like unemployment and inequality. His endorsement of a two-state solution in the Middle East was tact itself. However, chided by Malcolm X, Rustin’s nonviolent stance evolved. Addressing the Watts riots, he noted somberly: “If negro rioting is to be avoided in the future, it will be because negroes are enabled to get out of the vicious cycle of frustration that breeds aggression; because this country proves that it is capable of creating a new economic way of life without unemployment, without slums, without poverty.”

This book makes clear that Bayard Rustin, a man for his time, is a man for our time too.

Bayard Rustin: A Legacy of Protest and Politics is published in the US by New York University Press

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Movie Review Essay Examples

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The Depiction of Gender Discrimination in the Film 'Miss Representation'

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The "Children of a Lesser God" essay analyzes the thought-provoking drama that explores the complexities of communication and relationships, with exceptional performances by William Hurt and Marlee Matlin. "Children of a Lesser God" is a 1986 drama film that tells the story of James Leeds...

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The play The Importance of Being Earnest is the main topic for this essay. Now I am going to give a reflection on the play that is written by Oscar Wilde, and the 2002 film by Oliver Parker, of the same name. Oscar Wilde has...

"Vacation": a Comedy Adventure That's a Mix of Hits and Misses

The "Vacation" is a comedy that I will review in the essay starting with analysis of performances, cinematography and etc. "Vacation" is a 2015 comedy film directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein. It is a sequel to the National Lampoon's Vacation series and...

Gender Problems, Relationships and Quality: the Review of Twilight

The Twilight series, written by Stephanie Meyer, has become a cultural phenomenon since its first release in 2005. The series follows the love story of Bella Swan, a teenage girl who moves to the small town of Forks, Washington, and Edward Cullen, a vampire. The...

Film Review of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"

"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" is a masterpiece of modern cinema, directed by Michel Gondry and written by Charlie Kaufman. The film tells the story of Joel Barish (Jim Carrey) and Clementine Kruczynski (Kate Winslet), two former lovers who undergo a procedure to erase...

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