Revamped Movie Review Process

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Until now, our review scores have been a mixture of objectivity and subjectivity. Judging art is difficult because as objective as we would like to be, our pasts and presents inform how we feel about a given thing and even that can change from moment to moment. With new films released every day, year after year, what was once viewed in a certain light may be viewed in another light due to the myriad of influences and stimuli that have occurred between “then” and “now”. With that in mind, we will now be giving two review scores for every movie. One will be quality focused and the other will be based on pure enjoyment. For instance, the recently released Aquaman film received a 3.5 from us. Had the movie been released today, our review would see it receiving a 3.5 for quality and a 4.5 for enjoyability. We’d like to give you an insight into how we rate. Keep in mind that this is in no way scientific, but it should give you a better understanding of how we roll.

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For our review process, we break up scoring into several categories. The rating system is as follows:

Plot - Sequence of events that connect causally

Story - The whys and hows that inform the events of the plot

Writing - How well dialogue and characterization push the narrative

Direction - How well the pieces fit together. Pacing and editing

Acting - How well the actors/actresses emote and embody their characters

Practical and CG Effects - How well settings, costumes, choreography and effects are used to produce authenticity

Cinematography - How well the visual elements complement the story and incorporate the effects

Tone - The feel of the film within the confines of the universe and characters it presents

Music & Sound - How well the score and sounds complement the film’s tone scene by scene

When we view a movie, each category is given a numerical value from 0-100 for that specific movie. Those numbers are added up and an average is taken. A star value is added from 0-5 stars. A half a star is received for every 10 points of the total. As follows:

Yuck

Yuck

0 Stars - 0 Numerical Value

0.5 Star - 10 Numerical Value

1 Star - 20 Numerical Value

1.5 Stars - 30 Numerical Value

2 Stars - 40 Numerical Value

2.5 Stars - 50 Numerical Value

3 Stars - 60 Numerical Value

3.5 Stars - 70 Numerical Value

4 Stars - 80 Numerical Value

4.5 Stars - 90 Numerical Value

5.0 Stars - 100 Numerical Value

That takes care of the quality rating. The enjoyment rating is purely subjective. So let’s put some perspective on these numbers. Movies that score 100 in the plot category would be Ex Machina, The Dark Knight and Captain America: Winter Soldier. Movies that score 50 in the same category would be Matrix Reloaded, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword and Underworld: Evolution. Movies that score a 0 in the same category would be..well, those are very difficult to come by. A zero? Sheesh. Maybe Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance? Joe Dirt? Funny Games (Tim Roth)? I’m not sure. If a movie is that bad, you can probably tell from the trailers, which means it wouldn’t be reviewed here anyway. Here’s 3 movies per each remaining category that show a full 100, a 50 and a 0:

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Story - 100: Ex Machina — 50: Mortal Kombat — 0: Jack and Jill

Writing - 100: Michael Clayton — 50: Die Hard 2 — 0: The Emoji Movie

Direction - 100: No Country For Old Men — 50: Amazing Spider-Man 2 — 0: Hulk (Ang Lee)

Acting - 100: The Departed — 50: Deep Blue Sea — 0: Mansquito

Prac/CG FX - 100: Mad Max: Fury Road — 50: Green Lantern — 0: Sharknado

Cinematography - 100: Life of Pi — 50: The Day The Earth Stood Still (2008) — 0: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Tone - 100: The Dark Knight — 50: Man of Steel — 0: Batman & Robin

Music & Sound - 100: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 — 50: Spider-Man 3 — 0: Terminator 3

There you have it folks! Again those are just examples of a particular movie in just ONE category. Also, as much as I like to use the term objective for this, it’s really not, technically speaking. Art is meant to be subjective, even in movie critique. What you do if you like to use reviews to aid in knowledge or decision making is find an author or website that aligns with how you view movies more often than not. Read everything, but trust only a few things. All the movies we’ve reviewed so far will be updated with the new process, since we’re a new and fledgling site anyway. Hope to see you back soon!

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