Tsosti (Gavin Hood, 2005) TASK: Write either a blog entry or an internet film review focusing on why you think people should go and see your close study film.How To Write A Film ReviewFirstly, you need to think of an imaginative title. For instance, if I was writing a review of thenew Star Wars film, perhaps a good title could be, ‘Love and War amongst the Stars’. This titlegives a very brief idea of the nature of the film and provides a starting point for the reader tofocus on. The title might also give an indication of whether the rest of your review will bepositive or negative (suggesting if you liked it or not).The second stage (the opening paragraph) is to give a brief synopsis (summary) of the film. Youcan also state your early opinions here, but don’t give too much away too soon. Your aim is tomake the audience want to finish the article.After the synopsis, go into detail about what you thought of the film. Was it thought provoking? Did it have lasting images and ideas that particularly enthralled you?Whatever you view is, it is important to stress it in a comprehensible manner. Examine the filmmore closely, try to go into detail about the many ideas contained within the film.Don’t forget, what you enjoyed and remembered from the images and ideas in the film arewhat could be the deciding factor in whether or not the reader actually goes to see the filmthemselves.It is necessary to break the film down into its separate parts. By this, I mean that you shouldspend time stating which parts of the film worked for you. Was the setting and atmospheresuccessful? Did the plot flow all the way through the film or did it become disjointed and messypart of the way through? You must also look carefully into the characterisation.A close examination of the key roles in the feature will provide your audience with a better ideaof how the film is going to be. Never simply say that you loved or hated a certain movie withoutgiving your reasons. Always explain why you feel the way you do and back it up with descriptiveexamples.Even though your article should show from the start what your opinions are, at the end of thepiece you should give a conclusion that states strongly what you thought.Following these guidelines should provide you with enough information to start writing yourown reviews.
Structure in a Nutshell!!1. Title – catchy, can indicate if review will be positive or negative, you can play with words tomake it funny or different2. Paragraph 1 – Opening paragraph – can start to summarise film and give early suggestionsabout your general view of it (positive/negative)3. Paragraph 2 – Start or continue summary of film, don’t give details about the ending or elseno one will go and see the film!!4. Paragraph 3 and 4 – positive things you thought about the film, what did you like? Why? Usedescriptive words, think about the story, setting, effects used, music used5. Paragraph 5 and 6 – negative things you thought about the film, what didn’t you like? Why?Comment on the same type of things that you mentioned in paragraphs 3 and 46. Paragraph 7 and 8 – Characterization – talk about the characters, did you like them? Did theactors play them well? What was it about their portrayal that you liked or didn’t like? Otherimpressions of the characters, will certain audience members be able to relate to certaincharacters? How? Will certain audience members not like certain characters? Why not?7. Paragraph 9 – Final comments – general comments that summarize your view of the film,you may want to say something inspiring to get the reader to want to go out and see the film oryou might say something that would want them not to go and see it! After the paragraph youwould give it a star rating out of 5 to indicate your rating for it.
EXTRA HELPYou should discuss some of the following: Camerawork or visual style Music or sound Performance or characters How it compares to other films you have seen Any other aspects you have found interestingHere are some crucial questions you may want to answer as you write: 1. Is the film entertaining? Why? How? 2. Is it thought provoking? What issues does it raise? Does it offer simple answers or does it leave lots unanswered and therefore up for discussion? 3. In interviews the director Gavin Hood stresses the importance of allowing the actors to speak in the township dialect they know. This means the film may be less commercially successful as the presence of subtitles can be challenging for audiences, but Hood argues, it means the actor’s performances feel more authentic and energetic – what do you feel? 4. Discuss the importance of the music – how is it like a character in the film. 5. The film is beautifully shot by director of photographer Lance Dewer – are there any moments from the film which seemed especially beautiful – consider for example, the way the challenge of filming at night is overcome or the way certain shots are lit for example the ones in Tsotsi’s room when he is with the child. 6. What about the actor’s performances? Do you think any particularly need singling out for praise? In some ways the characters they play are distinct types, but do they manage to invest real humanity or depth into them? Are there any key scenes that stand out for you? 7. In the end would you recommend it to others? What did you get from seeing it?