Talk:Film criticism

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Pretty narrow definition[edit]

I think this definition of film criticism is pretty narrow -- the distinction between critics and reviewers is sometimes made, but it's much more of a continuum than this page suggests. (Kael is a reviewer, but Sarris is a critic?) I'm tempted to do a major rewrite, but someone else may be better qualified and I've got other topics I'd like to tackle first. Anyone else have any thoughts -- or an impulse to redo? Scarequotes 02:39, Sep 14, 2003 (UTC)

this part about "some say" needs to be removed or made more specific. Where is this official distinction between film critics and film reviewers made? Citation needed.

This part here...

"Normally they only see any given film once and have only a day or two to formulate opinions."

I don't know how to cite something backing this up, but it's certainly not always true. Some films are seen on tape or even DVD, or seen at film festivals and then seen again at press screenings. And while sometimes press screenings might occur a day or two before the release of the film, they can also happen months before, so the time needed to "formulate opinions" can vary widely.

External links to actual film criticism[edit]

I don’t know why SimonP is acting like the arbiter of relevancy for the Film Criticism page when he obviously doesn’t understand the difference between film criticism and movie reviews. The external links he eliminated were all links to journals or examples of film criticism; those he kept are all databases of movie reviews, except for the redundant master’s thesis on movie reviews and the link to “Big Picture Big Sound”, which looks to me like just a bunch of Google ads and two guys' opinions of some movies they watched. I’ve removed these two arbitrary links, and reinstated the external links SimonP poo-pooed, save the Upperstall and Midnight Eye links, which seem more appropriate on an Indian and Japanese cinema page, respectively. In any case, it seems pertinent for a page called “Film Criticism” to have some external links to actual criticism and not just to Ebert and his merry band of plot recapitulators.Sinlechuga 18:06, 19 November 2005 (UTC)

Notable film critics[edit]

This section of the article lists David Walsh. Is he really so notable? He writes for the World Socialist Web Site, a Trotskyist rag, but I'm not sure if his work is widely read or even known outside the Trotskyist community. —Psychonaut 07:29, 11 February 2006 (UTC)

He's also been published in Sight and Sound, Senses of Cinema, and several other mainstream places, so yes, I'd say he's notable. 05:50, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

Regarding the NPOV tag; taken from my talk page.[edit] seems very opinionated for one to make a list of critics that are noteworthy. If there's a certain criteria, perhaps it should be explained. Ohyeahmormons 03:59, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

Well, a lot of articles on various subjects have lists of notable these and thats, i.e. List of famous piano makers, Columnist, or List of authors. These are usually there to give the reader some idea of who is well known within that particular field, and as such serve a useful purpose.
As for notability, well, there is no set policy on that, but I could give some examples of what makes some critics notable that would give a general idea of why they should be in a list: Roger Ebert-first critic to win Pulitzer Prize, Leonard Maltin-publishes a comprehensive review book every year that usually becomes a #1 bestseller. Pauline Kael, Bosley Crowther, Vincent Canby, Janet Maslin, Stanley Kauffmann-have had a longtime association with a well known publication. Andrew Sarris, Andre Bazin, Francois Truffaut, Manny Farber-have published books or articles that profoundly influenced the field. James Agee, Graham Greene, Sergei Eisenstein, Peter Bogdanovich-are not not necessarily most famous for there film criticism, but are famous for other reasons.
Hopefully, that gives an idea of what sort of criteria should be used to decide on notability. Now, that NPOV tag is still up there because I'd contend that some of the people on that list are not notable: I can't even determine whether "Danielle Savage" even exists from a Google search. Same for Jean-Louis Beaudry, he doesn't seem to exist outside of this article. William Rothman though, definately does exist, and has published some books, but they don't seem to have had the earth shaking impact of stuff published by Sarris and likes. I'd be inclined to to just cut those and others in the list like that out, but it would probably be better to discuss first. Gershwinrb 05:29, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

My two cents: it's better to cut a few questionable names, than keep the tag on the page, which calls the whole page into question. PaulLev 23:08, 19 September 2006 (UTC)

I agree. Just cut a few of the less notable names. Jiberole 19:38, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
Good. So, we can one of us just remove the NPOV tag, or must an administrator do that? (I'm relatively new here.)PaulLev 22:34, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
OK - I removed the NPOV tag. My suggestion for the future: if anyone thinks any of names don't belong in the listing, then the name(s) should be discussed individually.PaulLev 02:53, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Criticism of Criticism section[edit]

The just-added "Criticism of Criticism" section refers to no authoritative sources and is not very well argued. I was going to delete it, but I thought I'd check first to see if anyone could support the points it makes. --Jeremy Butler 12:01, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

It's not something that I would be surprised at if it were true, but I can't verify it off the top of my head. Perhaps it would be best to move it here from out of the main article until it can be sourced? As it stands right now, the arguement rests on a straw man. Gershwinrb 09:17, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

Elements of style in a movie[edit]

(Note : this suggestion has also been posted on Film theory. Actually, I don't know where this request fits best).

It would be cool to provide an (almost) exhaustive list of what can be discussed in a movie, as well as examples of typical movies of such styles. Example :

  • Rythm : alternance of quiet and active times (or whatever :-). Example of a movie with a remarkable rythm : The big sleep
  • Field depth : See main article field depth. Example of a movie with low field depth : whatever. Example of notable field depth effects : whatever

Thanks. King mike 07:41, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

This is the thrust of what I'd like to accomplish with a new website I just set up -, if anybody is interested in participating. HamillianActor 00:12, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

External Links Clean Up[edit]

I've just cleaned out the External Links section -- deleting sites that appeared to be vanity projects or otherwise not-notable review sites. If anyone can make a case for any of the deleted sites, please do so here. --Jeremy Butler 10:53, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

External links[edit]

While agreeing that links to individiual critics/journals are superfluous, I think the sites that are ABOUT film criticism (e.g., are pertinent. They help a reader understand what criticism involves and what different types of criticism are available. --Jeremy Butler 11:33, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

Notable critics[edit]

The list of notable journalistic critics is, I feel, terribly Anglo-centric. Also makes me wonder why Truffaut has been included in academic critics, whereas he was, as far as I know, anything but academic. Naphra 05:24, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Ok, the article does make a case for including Truffaut in academic critics, seems I didn't read it carefully enough; however, I still feel that the whole list is rather imbalanced, and that academic may not be quite the word to describe some of the more theoretical critics. Naphra 05:29, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Quote Whoring Addition?[edit]

In advertisements for Smoking Aces, a quote from a negative New York Times review, in which the quote had been used in a negative light, was cast positively. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:45, August 23, 2007 (UTC)


low!!! muzta Uhh@!!!! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:51, 9 August 2009 (UTC)


I was surprised that this article does not have a Controversy section, considering the overall public negativity towards the movie critics (including notable actors, directors and so on). This is just not typical for an article about such a hated group of people.Preslavk (talk) 02:13, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

Strange examples[edit]

I can't help but look at the criticism section and wonder how the films were chosen, except to conclude they were put in by an Avatar fan enraged by the fact that Hurt Locker beat Avatar to best film in the Academy Awards. Could I perhaps put in an art house example that is actually art house? (talk) 19:44, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Actually, I may just re-word it all to give appropriate context (the issue won't have much relevance without context in a year or two), and change Hurt Locker's description from art house to that of a film that simply didn't achieve major box-office success. (talk) 19:51, 1 January 2011 (UTC)


I find the current list of hubs rather underwhelming. Not only is it Anglo-centric, but they're links to newspapers that the average Wiki reader would already be familiar with. I think someone interested in, but inexperienced with, film criticism might want stronger, more cinephile-friendly recommendations. I think a link to the Cahier du cinéma and Sight & Sound websites should be no-brainers. But what about respectable webzines and critics' blogs? Slant, Ebert, Rosenbaum, etc. 17:26, 26 December 2011 — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cbennett1989 (talkcontribs)

Criticism on this article[edit]

This article was mentioned on the DGA, (Directors Guild of America), website[1] ,(which is a treasure). It looks like this column was posted sometime in 2010;

Look up the words "film critic" online—not that one necessarily should—and a Wikipedia definition is the first to pop up. The description is decidedly, and oddly, old school:

"Film critics analyze and evaluate film," states the site. That much is true. But there's more: "They can be divided into journalistic critics who write for newspapers and other popular, mass-media outlets, and academic critics who are informed by film theory and publish in journals."

Sounds neat and precise, but it's inaccurate and outdated. In fact, academics and theorists writing in scholarly journals are in the minority and newspaper critics are a dying breed. Ironically, for a Web encyclopedia, a third category of Web critics—bloggers—is not mentioned, even though their ranks are growing daily.-CLAUDIA PUIG in
  1. ^ "Critical Revision".