My Review System

- My review system is extremely harsh, so keep that in mind.
- Each movie will be graded in four categories.  Within each category, there are four possible stars, each having a corresponding quality. 
- Each sequential star (in a category) is worth more points.  It should be difficult for a movie to get multiple stars in one category.
- If a movie gets all four stars in a category, it is worth seeing for that accomplishment alone. 
- If a movie gets no stars in a category, it is awarded the black star.  A star with black star is almost worth avoiding for that reason alone.
- When reviewing a movie, remember, you are judging that movie for yourself.  Don’t get caught up on how others might judge your decisions.
- As long as the movie meets at least 60% of a quality, the star may be awarded.  If you are looking to find your ultimate-top-favorite movies, however, I suggest you be as strict as possible (only awarding the star for movies that reflect 80-100% of the quality).
- Once all points are tallied, a traditional “5 Star” rating is given based on that total.

- Its characters were people you loved or loved to hate (apart from acting). 
- You never questioned the motives of any character.
- When the characters were in conflict, you felt real suspense.
- You found yourself rooting for (or against) its characters.

- The settings felt like a real places, not movie sets.
- The culture/science/history represented in the film were authentic without coming off as forced or unresearched.

- Every scene was purposefully made and contributed to the story as a whole.
- The conclusion was satisfying.
- The movie built on itself in an intelligent way from beginning to end.
- The beginning is better after knowing the end.
- All points of confusion were cleared up by the time the movie ended.

- It was free of clich├ęs.
- Poor elements, if there were any, never distracted you from the film.
- The film is among the bests in its genre.

- In your opinion, this film will stand the test of time (or it already has).
- This movie did things you hope other will mimic.

- Lines and scenes were memorable and/or quotable.
- When you imagine key scenes, you can remember the way you felt when you first saw them.

- You enjoy it more each time you see it.
- After multiple viewings, the film still invokes and emotional response (humor, sadness, fear, etc.).

- You often recommend this movie to friends.
- You enjoy watching it with people seeing it for the first time.

- The characters felt like real people, not actors (beyond the lines of dialogue they were given).
- All emotions displayed appeared real.

- If you closed your eyes, you felt like you’re there.
- The score not only contributed to film, it took it to another level.

- The film’s presentation was likable and/or unique.
- All parts were clever and/or interesting.
- It clearly guided by vision without being pretentious. 

- It accomplished something beyond its means (budget, year it was made, etc.).
- You forgot you were watching a movie.  You got lost in it.  


- The theme was meaningful within context of the genre.
- It made you aware of (or reinforced) ideas without being preachy.
- It stirred and emotional response within you.
- The film affected you in a formative way.
- You will (or do) look back at it nostalgically.

- All parts were engaging.  No parts were boring or slow.
- You were always excited/scared/interested to see what happened next.
- You were constantly impressed and surprised by the film (plot, artistic quality, etc).

- All aspects (style, visuals, music, acting, plot) worked together.

- You desire for the movie to live on in any format.
- You keep watching its pathetically derivate sequels because this movie was so good.
- You collect any merchandise you can get your hands on.
- You find yourself liking actors/directors/musicians/etc. because they are linked to this movie.

- After taking everything above into consideration, you have four extra stars to rate the movie.  This is more about personal preferences and tastes than it is concrete numbers.
- This is separate from, and not in addition to, the process (although it is part of the process).  Pretend you only have these stars to rate the movie.
- If you don’t think the process has fully captured your love of the movie, now is your chance to give it a little boost.  However, don’t overdo it.  Remain reasonable with your assessment.  The forth star (and maybe even third) should only be reserved for your favorite movies.