Skip to main content

film review suggestions and guides

Quite a few students this semester have decided that they would like to write film reviews for their final project. Here are the instructions:
  1. Choose a film:
  2. Watch the film:
    • Try to watch the film at least twice. It might seem like a boring and unnecessary requirement, but this rule has been proven by many. It is practically impossible to write a solid film review having watched the film only once.
    • As you watch the film the second time, make notes of critical scenes that seem to be particularly relevant to our class-- how the film you've chosen relates to the main themes in this class such as why people move, their reception, assimilation experiences, etc.
  3. Prepare and write the review:
    • Read about the story behind the film (whether it is based on real-life events, on a well-known novel, or on the personal experience of the director, etc.). Include any interesting and peculiar facts about the production process, the basis for the story, the cast and the crew, the budget and the shooting location.
    • Introduction: Write an introduction where you include all the basic information so that the film can be easily identified and there is no confusion. Note the name, the director, main cast and the characters in the story, along with the year (and possibly date) of the premiere.
    • Body: Write the main body. Analyze the story on the whole. In a standard film review, this section is where you would normally analyze the performance of the actors or the vision of the director, etc. Since this is an assignment for a sociology class, I would like you to discuss how the film is related to the themes of this class and why it's a good film to watch for an immigration class.
    • Conclusion: Make a conclusion. State what the general perception of the film was by the audience and the critics. Then express your personal opinion and either recommend the film (in this case, specify what audience will most likely enjoy it) or not recommend it. Include the rationale for your opinion. 
    • Much of these recommendations came from this page and you may wish to visit this page for a more detailed suggestions for writing a film review.
  4. Submit your review:


Popular posts from this blog

The Chinese Exclusion Act film

A new documentary from Ric Burns and Li-Shin Yu will broadcast on PBS in March 2017. See this site for more details:

add a public Google calendar to your Android device

Subscribing to a Google calendar on Android is actually a two-step process. You must first subscribe to the calendar using the web version of Google Calendar and then add it to your Android device.

Migration Flipboard

As part of an ongoing way to get new and up-to-date readings to students, I've been playing with different tools. This blog was one way, but I have a sneaking suspicion that students don't really read the substantive posts available here...I've also considered creating a shared "class bibliography" project using Cite-u-Like or Zotero. The idea is that there must be a way to quickly and easily share articles recent articles that we may read regularly, but that students don't see. In this way it's akin to enlarging their circle of resources. Of course, we could just add students to our social networks such as Facebook or Twitter, but I'm not one of those instructors who is comfortable sharing my Facebook information with my students and sometimes I take long breaks from Twitter. So at present, I'm playing with Flipboard. I create my own "magazine" around a particular class I'm teaching- Stats or Migration- and put articles that I think…