Reading Reviews

So you’ve read your books, and if you did yesterday’s assignment, you’ve identified some of the main features of those books that would be used in adaptations of those books to screenplay form (if you didn’t do this, go read the previous post).

Now you should be thinking about the actual film adaptations of those novels. I’m assuming that most of you haven’t seen the films yet, but it’s okay either way. If you haven’t seen it, plan on getting ahold of it and viewing it sometime in the next week.

Today, I want everyone to go to www.imdb.com. That’s the Internet Movie Database, a very useful website when trying to find information about films. Type the name of your film into the top search bar. It’ll come up with a list of results; click on your film. Then, on the left hand column, under “Awards & Reviews” heading, click on “external reviews.” This will bring up a list of professionally written reviews of your film that were written for magazines, newspapers, and websites when that film was released.

Ready for your assignment?

1. Select three or four reviews of your film. Make sure you get each reviewer’s name, the title of the review, the publication it was written for, and the date of publication.

2. For each review, summarize the strengths and weaknesses of the film according to that reviewer in a couple of paragraphs. Be specific, quote briefly if you must, but put the arguments of each reviewer into your own words.

For those students who want to distinguish themselves from the pack and ensure a better grade on the assignment, synthesize all the reviews into one continuous, well-written overview of 4-5 good paragraphs. Students who do this well will earn an A on the assignment.

You’ve got an extra day for this one. Work on selecting and reading the reviews, and beginning to summarize them today. You’ll have more time to write on Wednesday.

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