lot of people have asked us how we weight certain things
in our critiques of films. This is especially important
to understand considering
that we employ a number of different professional film
that said, let me explain the relative weight of the five
main categories which add
up to a total of 500 points. The segments are Content,
Visual Look, Use of Audio, Use of Budget, and Lasting
Appeal and each are worth one hundred points. (While I
debated having Content worth one hundred fifty points,
it ended up making the scoring process just too complicated
due to the changes that had to be made in the rest of
This is probably the most dense section as it covers writing,
acting, general editing, story pacing, and the ending.
The specific breakdown within this category is:
- These are virtually impossible to separate due
to their co-dependence on one another. This deals
with how interesting the viewers will find specific
characters. This receives 25% of the possible Content
- Another co-dependent group, this group determines
how compelling and interesting the viewer finds
the film. This receives 25% of the possible Content
- The only segment of content that stands "alone",
the ending will make or break your film. If you
have the best film on the planet but a wishy-washy
and unsatisfying ending, your audience will hate
the film. Conversely, if you have some issues earlier
in the film, but can manage to make a uniquely satisfying
ending, many audiences will see past your earlier
mistakes. Because of its crucial nature, it receives
50% of the possible Content points as well.
Establishing a unique look through camerawork, set design,
costuming, white balance, lighting, editing, and effects.
Although the visual look of the film is important, it's
not generally as important as the actual content of the
film. I say 'generally' because it can detract from a
film's content if it's problematic enough to distract
the audience (such as the awful hand-held camera and dim
lighting in the Bourne Supremacy) or prevent them from
suspending their disbelief (such as the problematic rendering
of creatures in Star Wars I & II or King Kong).
such, the two things to remember about the visual look
section are: style and suspension of disbelief. Although
we break it down into different segments, your primary
goal is to be able create a unique look for your film
and to be able to choose effects and visual cues that
aid in the suspension of disbelief.
specific segments are as follows:
- This covers the use of designed backgrounds, color
palettes, and costuming to create a unique look
for your film. This is worth 25% of the Visual Look
- This covers the use of interesting camera angles,
moving cameras, zooms, and depth of field adjustments.
This is worth 25% of the Visual Look points.
- This covers how well the subjects and background
are lit and balanced. This is worth 25% of the Visual
- This covers transitions, title sequences, and
effects. While this is also worth 25% of the Visual
Look points, it may be weighted higher or lower
in special circumstances.