This is just a simple explanation of how I rate and critique movies.
I realize this isn’t a perfect rating system, but no system is perfect when a human factor is involved. All I want is for my ratings to help people wade through the mine field of time-wasting movie.
Cinematic quality – whether that is cinematography, the script, or acting – is one of my favorite aspects to critique. I realize those are huge factors lumped together into just one category, but that’s okay since this category is highly weighted. Just to be clear, I can appreciate the cinematic quality (Casablanca or One Who Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest) yet the movie may not appeal to me, and that’s why my enjoyment is another factor. However, I am a huge sucker for long shots, think Tarantino dialogue scenes. Overall cinematic quality has the greatest weight in my reviews/ratings, and normally accounts for 4-5 points out of 10.
Did I like the film? This is the second highest factor I consider when evaluating a film. For instance, I didn’t LOVE The Silence of the Lambs (8/10 rating, IMDB 8.6/10) but I did LOVE Gladiator (9/10 rating, IMDB 8.5/10). My enjoyment, or appreciation, normally accounts for around 3-4 points out of the 10.
Music, makeup, and wardrobe. I love a great soundtrack or score. Music and sound effects set the tone and pacing of everything when it comes to a movie. Makeup and wardrobe are something I look at as, “that something extra.” I realize great makeup and wardrobe aren’t always present, but at the same time it isn’t always necessary. I don’t care about how the actors and actresses dress in Manchester By the Sea, but in Mad Max it makes the film even more memorable. This is the least weighted when included my ratings, accounting for around 1-2 points out of the 10.
Lastly, and yes Im aware I have assigned 10 out of the 10 points depending on the weight assigned, is the “it” factor. Sometimes you can’t explain it, but everyone knows what I’m talking about. My example for this is Warrior. Now a lot of people, particularly men, really enjoyed this film – even though it wasn’t a cinematic masterpiece. Yes there is great acting from Hardy and Nolte, but the plot is a bit silly (two fights a day for two days…ya right). However this movie just had that “it” factor when it came to capturing the difficulties between father and son – and the fight scenes were pretty cool too.
Overall I have rated over 1,000 films on IMDB, and there are probably many I have seen but forgot to rate. I hope you enjoy my reviews as I release them. Please feel free to reach out and suggest some of your favorites, or even add input to my reviews!
Full IMDB ratings…just in case you can’t wait for a review!