Reading Film Pre-Draft: Reviewing the Reviewers

Reviewing the Reviewers

I. Your next assignment will ask you to notice the style and stance of different film critics. Thus, you need to pay attention to both the ideas and arguments they would make, as well as the manner in which they make those arguments. Let’s practice with two critics: [Roger Ebert] and [Pauline Kael]. Identify and mark specific instances of rhetoric in two film reviews. Look for:

  • Style (Harvey)
  • Stance (Harvey)
  • Ethos, pathos, or logos (Aristotle)
  • metaphor or simile (unlike comparisons)
  • adjectives or adverbs
  • connotation (not the literal meaning of a word, but what it implies)
  • hyperbole (exaggeration)
  • personification (giving inanimate object human qualities)
  • repetition

II. Using what we have discussed together, write a one paragraph review of [a short cartoon or film] imitating either Barthes or Eisenstein.

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