A movie critic writes movie reviews and typically works for magazines, journals, television, radio stations, newspapers, social media, or websites. A career as a movie critic is competitive and it may take time to establish your reputation as a critic.
How to Become a Movie Critic
A movie critic typically needs a bachelor’s degree in screenwriting or film to work in this career field. Some critics may have a background in journalism and creative writing. However, they all need a basic understanding of writing or reporting on film as a building block. A movie critic must study and analyze filmmakers throughout the history of filmmaking and watches many lesser-known films and Hollywood blockbusters to gain more knowledge of the industry.
They watch the different elements of the film, like plot and character development and write about the plot, performance, directing, and cinematography. A movie critic needs writing skills to communicate the elements of the film for the public and will try to make the review informative while being entertaining. Movie critics must also build a portfolio that includes published reviews, content on their own websites, or podcasts episodes may have been featured on. This portfolio is essentially proof of their analytical ability in film reviews.
Now we must look at the value of experience. It isn’t easy to get into this business, so a movie critic may begin their career with an entry-level position at various publications or radio stations. They typically also network with people that may help them advance their career. Once a amateur critic establishes a solid reputation, they may move to become a journalistic movie critic. These critics write in more established newspapers, magazines, and online resources and may focus more on new movie releases. They write more detailed summaries, subjectively breaking down the film and rating it. Movie criticism has a significant impact on cinema. The rating from a movie critic is what people may look for when deciding what film they wish to see.
There is another type of film critic, which is academic in nature. A literary film critic typically publishes in journals or books and tends to be more objective about a film. The academic film critic has a background in various areas of filmmaking, like film history, studies, or theory. They help the public understand the subject matter, emotional feel, and other elements. In other words, they help the viewer get more out of the movie. If you are still in high school or middle school, you can take creative writing and focus on English. Photography classes can also be helpful to start teaching you some of the concepts of film.
Job Description of a Movie Critic
The job of the movie critic seems ideal. Who doesn’t love to watch a good movie? However, the critic’s job is to help people select the best movie through creative writing and rating talent. The movie the critic watches may depend on the publisher, newspaper, magazine, or digital outlet that needs the review. Critics are the first to watch a film and writes their review so the public can gain early insight into it’s pros and cons.
They score the movie on various elements such as quality and acting and also summarize the film without trying to give away too much of the film. Writing a film review is time-consuming and movie critics must also meet their deadlines. An amateur movie critic often select which movies they wish to cover and may not have the pressure of deadlines while they build their portfolio. However, amateur movie critics are disciplined to post their reviews while the movie is still current.
The movie critic researches the backgrounds of the writers, directors, and actors, informs the audience of other films they have worked in, and compares their performances. They want the opinions of their reviews to capture their followers. The movie critic’s career is competitive, hard to get your foot in the door, and takes a long time to make a living at it, but don’t give up! If you have a passion for cinema and want to share it with the public, this may be the career for you! Good luck!