Many people get bored with their daily work and often prefer to watch a good film to boost their mood. And if you hardly get some time to watch a movie, you would not like to waste that free time on a terrible movie. We all know an awful film does not only waste time, moreover, ruins the entire experience and mood. Film criticism works best in these situations.
In this article, I have answered what is film criticism? What are film critics? How are they beneficial for the film audience? And two types of film critics. Furthermore, I have also discussed the process of becoming a movie critic. It will help you to see if this job is fit for you.
So, without any further delay, let us first explore what is film criticism?
Definition of film criticism:
Film criticism is a bit technical term. This terminology is commonly known as film reviews. It allows the viewers to know whether they should watch a film or not. However, these two terms are totally different.
What are film critics?
Film critics are the community of people that analyzes a film based on their creative and analytical skills. They use their knowledge about films and writing skills to craft a professional review. These reviews help the audience to determine whether they should watch that film or not.
Apart from their writing skills of crafting a film critique, their votes may also responsible for multiple award seasons. For example, the Critics Choice Awards.
Two types of film criticism:
Academic film criticism:
As the name suggests, it is a fully professional analysis of a film. It majorly focuses on the screenplay, plot development, acting, cinematography, camera work, editing, score, etc. This film criticism explores these aspects of the film with utmost details. These criticisms are then included in the academic books or journals.
Despite giving a summary of the film, this film criticism discusses the importance of the film and how it is beneficial for society. An academic critic member must have a background in film studies, or theory.
Non-professional film criticism:
Unlike professional film criticism, this type of film criticism mainly focuses on the film’s plot. These critic members give their personal opinion about the film. They usually talk about the story, acting, characters, etc.
These critic members generally work for the magazine, newspaper, radio, or television. They can also work for their personal publication, blog, or any other online platform. Non-professional film criticism majorly considers only the entertainment factor of the film, rather its benefits for the society.
How film criticism is helpful for the audience?
As I mentioned earlier, many people watch films as a change in their day-to-day life. After getting bored with daily work, people often prefer to watch a film. And no one would want to ruin that time by watching a bad film.
Movie criticism allows the audiences to determine whether they should watch the film, or not. Their recommendation may consume the audience’s time for something that worth watching.
Besides, a short non-spoiler description of the plot may create some amount of curiosity among the audience. This curiosity can engage the audience even before starting to watch the film. Also, the summary regarding the nature, tone, and language of the film can help the viewers to decide whether the film is family-friendly, or not.
How to start your career as a film critic?
If you see film criticism as a career with a certified background in film, the first thing you need to obtain is your bachelor’s degree in film studies, journalism, or any other related field. This degree will allow you to work for newspapers, magazines, etc.
Having a degree has an added benefit of a higher probability of being hired for the job you want.
Learn about the film industry:
Study the various departments of the film and their role in filmmaking. It is the most efficient way of increasing your film knowledge. Explore the work and style of other well-known filmmakers. Study different genres, and watch as much as films you can to understand the respective genre.
Do not only go for the movies with high ratings. Watch some movies with low ratings too. It will allow you to differentiate between the good and the bad.
Improve your writing skills:
Since many film critics work for magazines, newspapers, you need to master the writing skills. Improving the writing skills does not just mean studying grammar, sentence structure, and vocabulary.
Writing work has to be perfect, moreover, it must engage your readers. No matter how good you are in grammar, you must learn to write all your ideas entertainingly.
Create a portfolio:
Now that you have obtained a bachelor’s degree and learned enough about the film industry, it is time to start your work as a film critic.
Working for a magazine or newspaper can be a good start. Your colleagues will encourage you to help you move forward in the right direction. However, many of these platforms first ask for the experience. So, it is very hard for the freshers to get hired.
Another way of building your portfolio is the use of social media. The popularity of social media is increasing day by day. Use that platform to reach out to the people and build your reputation. Otherwise, search for the websites that accept user-submitted movie reviews.
Or else if you want to work for yourselves, start your own blog, youtube, or podcast channel. Use any of these platforms to open up your film analytical ideas with as many people as you can. This portfolio (or resume) will give global exposure and open the doors of several future opportunities.
FAQ regarding film criticism
Film criticism is the detailed analysis of a film based on its plot, acting, cinematography, editing, etc. Many people consider film criticism as film reviews. However, they both have a very different meanings
Film criticism is the professional analysis that majorly focuses on the various aspects of the film, such as, cinematography, screenplay, directing, acting, editing, score, and more. These criticisms are often published in academic books or journals.
Whereas, film reviews are the non-professional film criticisms that focus on the story, acting, etc. These are personal opinions of an individual, written for movie fans. Film reviews are generally found in newspapers, magazines, or websites.
film criticism allows the viewers to determine whether the film worth watching, or not. However, it is not only helpful for the audience but the filmmakers and the actors too. Positive criticism for an individual can boost his/her confidence. Similarly, negative criticism can enlighten the scope of improvement to work hard.
1. Roger Ebert
2. Rotten Tomatoes
3. The Guardian
6. Film comment
1. The Hollywood Reporter
4. Film Journal International
6. The New Yorker
7. New York Magazine
I hope now you all are aware of film criticism and the job of film critics. If this article was helpful for you, let me know in the comment section. Your comments will motivate me to write more.