How to Write a Review of a Book, Movie, or Play

You have probably come across a review in a magazine or in a blog.  A review is an article or an essay that provides a critical evaluation to an artistic work, as in a play, book, or a movie.  Every once in a while, you may also have the opportunity, whether voluntary or not, to write a review about a work that you have recently saw or read, be it a requirement in school or as part of your personal blog.  Having read an expert’s review in a magazine, you may consider it a difficult task.  While it definitely required effort and a relatively wide range of knowledge, writing a review of a book, movie, or play would be quite easy, as long as you will be honest and fair in your opinions.

Step 1:  Categorize it.

The first thing to do is to fit the movie, play, or book in a single category or genre.  This way it will be easier to review it, since you will be focusing on its genre.

Warning:  Most movies, plays, or books are already advertised according to their genres, so don’t make the mistake of classifying them otherwise, in such a way that would discredit your review.

Step 2:

Develop your set of criteria. Your personal criteria  are among the most important aspects of your review.  These will be the basis of your judgment and opinions.

Warning:  You can base your criteria from the other reviews that you have seen.  But remember that it will be you who will do the review, so it is important that you set them according to your standards.

Step 3:

Make your judgment.  Based on your criteria, you can now start writing your judgment of the movie, play, or book.

Warning:  Be fair and honest with your opinion.  It should not matter if one of the main actors of the play or movie, or the author of the book is your friend, relative, or idol.

Step 4:

Write your review.  You can now write your review article, be it in formal writing or in humorous essay style.  You can follow the regular style in writing review, or make your own style or format.

Warning:  Be clear with your transitions, or risk having someone review your own review.

Writing a review may be difficult, and well, boring.  But critical review is important not only for you to develop a sense of criticism, but also for you to enjoy and understand the artistic works that you see every time.  This will prove helpful for those being reviewed on their future endeavors.

Photo Credit : Shareski

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  1. What is the essence of a review? Reviews are important to help consumers. They are made to criticize or appreciate services or products for the consumer convenience. Usually, a reviewer can be classified either as happy or unsatisfied customer. Is a product review effective? Yes. Reviews help strengthening a customer’s belief and trust in a product. A review can be so influential so a product or a service that has negative reviews has a lot of problems to handle.

    However, it is still up to the consumers decision whether to buy the goods whether the reviews are good or bad.

  2. whimsical1207 says:

    What are the parts of a book review?

    The first part of the book review is usually the introduction wherein the you give a backgrounf about the author or maybe your impression about the book. The second part is where you can give the plot of the book. However, it is important that the ending of the book is not given away.Third part is your opinion about the book. Maybe you can give insights that you were able to get from reading and last part is your recommendation whether the book is a good read or not.

  3. Evesdrop says:

    To write a good review, whether it is for a book, movie or a play you have seen, it is very important to put your biases aside. Most of the time, well written books gets bad reviews because of comparison. Either the previous book was better or it did not surpass the heightened expectation from the second book. Sometimes it just doesn’t seem fair. But then again that is all part of a review. Authors or Filmmakers or Playwrights hold reviews in very high regard, so it is the Critiques responsibility to play it nice and fair. Constructive criticism plays major a role in encouraging a person to work better. Although getting a very negative review does keep a playwright’s blood rising especially if one takes pride in his own work, it does create a positive effect in creating a much better written, much improved execution from the playwright in his next play.

  4. Josephine says:

    Writing a review is helpful to other buyers/readers/audience. But it must be remembered that a helpful review is something that is fair, honest and full of incites. Fair because the review of the person towards the book/movie/etc is absent of influences from other reviewer therefore giving the readers a real criticism be it good or negative. Honest because the reviewer must state his opinions based on how he really feels about the certain book/movie/etc. Lastly, a helpful review should be full of incites. It should be substantial, should give a clear message to the readers and assist the readers to promulgate their very own judgment about the thing in review.

  5. Insights, such as the comments posted in this blog are invaluable source of information. They could very well be the deciding factor in which would determine whether a movie, book or play would gain success or go down the drain along with the other rejects. As a reviewer, it is a given that you must be fair and concise with your words, never write with bias nor prejudice, always put into mind that the future of the author or cast could very well lie within your fingertips. It doesn’t matter if the review is on a blog you think “no one reads”. Every review online has influence.

  6. Writing a review of a subject pertaining to movies,books or play is one way of a constructive criticism.By reviewing about the certain subjects,the writers of the movie,book or play gets feedback about their work and then learns if what they created was indeed one of their finest works or if they need to further improve upon their works.How to write a review must come directly from the mind and heart of the individual and also must point out certain aspects that must not be biased so as to get a good grasp of the works.

  7. How can I write a perfect review without sounding biased? It is extremely important to write the pros and cons of the Book, Movie, or Play you will be reviewing. Write specific points that you feel you have to address on a separate piece of paper. It will save you time and effort because you do not have to reread and categorize what you have written. Start with the good points first in your review. Make sure that you have put a lot of thinking on your transition statement from the good points to the bad points.

  8. potrish78 says:

    More often than not, a review would always be subjective rather than objective for the mere fact that most reviews are based on the author’s opinion. The most important thing to remember when writing a review is that you state your opinion honestly with a fair judgment. With that said, a review must consist of positive and negative comments as well.

    A review helps consumers decide whether they should or should not purchase a book or watch a play/movie.

    Professional critics, normally compares the author’s past written books or the director’s past movies. They also write any resemblances to other books or movies. But an informal review, like that of a consumer’s review usually just includes opinions and personal feelings about a book read, a movie watched or a play attended.

    The ultimate mistake that a reviewer could do is to indicate spoilers. So in order to create an effective review, it should not contain important details that would reveal the highlight of the story.

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