Posted Date: Tuesday, August 27, 2013
My name is Claire Laing and I am part of the Social Media Team for the EIFF. This year the EIFF is trying to encourage people who don’t normally attend the festival to give it a try. With this in mind I thought it would be fun for us to learn how to be a film critic.
I have spent an embarrassing amount of time (and money) getting a Masters degree in Mass Communications. What is Mass Communications you ask? Well I can tell you that it is not in fact about bible distribution, as I was once asked. Mass Communication is about the different media that are used to send a message to mass audiences. This would include radio, television, journalism, new media (computer stuff) and film.
As I was working towards my degree I focused my attention on new media because that is what my background is in (and I wanted to increase my odds of getting a job after I was done). So while I don’t have a lot of knowledge about film I do have some in the bigger field of communication. What you are going to be seeing from me is a series of posts that will take both you and me through the express process of becoming a film critic.
Don’t worry, I will do most of the hard work. All you have to do is read these blog posts. While at the end you should be able sound like a respectable film critic, what I really want is for us is to be able to talk about why we might have liked or didn’t like a film.
Lesson 1: It is essential to passively watch films before we can actively analyze them. There is plenty of time to dissect things afterwards if that is something we want to do.
Have you ever had to stop yourself from laughing at a joke in a film because it took you a second to realize it was really tasteless? Or have you ever been too confused by all the plot twists in a film to understand what was actually happening? Well those raw moments are the best indicators of a movie’s potential successes or failures. We can’t really question how they made us feel or think if we don’t let ourselves feel and think organically in the moment.
I think that is a good place to end today. Check back later this week for an interesting history lesson about film and the film industry. It will not be a boring history lesson. I can promise you romance, action, intrigue and a soupçon of mystery.
Thanks for reading.