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R RE EV VIIE EW WS S ____________________________________________________________________________________________ A review is a special type of article written for publication in a magazine, newspaper, etc., giving a brief description and evaluation of a film, book, play, etc. It may be formal or semiformal in style, depending on its intended readership, and is usually written using present tenses. P PA AR RA AG GR RA AP PH HP PL LA AN N Paragraph 1 – Introduction: title, type of book/play/film/CD, etc.; setting (when/where) theme, main characters, etc; overall impression. Paragraphs 2-3 - Main points of the plot (without revealing the ending); evaluation of such features as acting, writing style, direction, characters, etc. Paragraph 4: Conclusion: overall assessment and a recommendation, usually with a justification. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * U US SE EF FU UL LL LA AN NG GU UA AG GE E To begin reviews This well-written/informative/fascinating/thought-provoking book is… This film/book/play/ etc is set in… This film/book/play/ etc tells the story of… This film/book/play/ etc is based on… To explain the plot The plot revolves around… The plot involves… The plot focuses on… The plot has an unexpected twist. The story begins with… The story reaches a dramatic climax when… Evaluating various features The play/film/series has a strong/star-studded/mediocre staff. The acting is moving/powerful/excellent/weak/disappointing/unconvincing. The plot is gripping/dramatic/fascinating/suspense-filled/fast moving/far-fetched/ predicable/confusing/dull/unimaginative. The script/dialogue is touching/witty/hilarious/boring/mundane. It is beautifully/brilliantly/written/directed. Reading the book, you cannot fail to… The writing is, for the most part,… The book leaves you feeling… It manages to successfully combine… After the first few pages, you feel… Reviews - 1

To give positive reviews You should definitely see/ read… I would advise anyone to (see/watch/go to, etc) This is a film you should not miss… If you have the chance, make sure you (see/watch/go to, etc) You might enjoy… All in all, it is well worth seeing/ reading, since… I would thoroughly recommend (name of book/film/CD, etc). It is a classic of its kind. It is sure to be a hit/best seller. To give negative reviews On the whole, I wouldn’t recommend (name of book/film/CD, etc), as/since… (Name of book/film/CD, etc) is not worth seeing/buying/reading, etc. This is a film/book/play, etc to avoid. Unfortunately, this (book/film/CD, etc) fails to live up to expectations. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

U US SE EF FU UL LV VO OC CA AB BU UL LA AR RY Y:: B BO OO OK KS S,, F FIIL LM MS S,, P PL LA AY YS S& &M MU US SIIC C BOOKS/FILMS/PLAYS (General vocabulary) blockbuster: a book or film that is very good or successful. box-office hit: a successful film, play or actor who many people go to see.

be a runaway success: happening very easily or quickly. star-studded: including many famous performers. A starstudded cast.

score: a written or printed copy of a piece of music, especially for a large group of performers, or the music itself. soundtrack: the recorded music from a film. underrated: better than people think or say. overrated: not as good or important as some people think or say.

on the edge of your seat: giving all your attention to something exciting: The film's ending had me on the edge of my seat.

C H A R A CT E R S P o s it iv e Negative likeable shallow: not showing any understanding of serious matters. convincing unconvincing believable A CT I N G / P E RF O R M A N CE S P o s it iv e Negative natural wooden: not showing any enough expression, emotion or powerful movement. spectacular appalling: very bad. disappointing

Reviews - 2

PL O T / ST O R Y P o s i t iv e

gripping: very exciting and interesting. riveting: so interesting or exciting that you cannot stop watching it or listening to it.

compelling: very interesting or exciting, so that you have to pay attention.

absorbing fascinating entertaining hilarious suspense-filled fast moving chilling: making you feel frightened, especially because it is cruel,


far-fetched: extremely unlikely to be true or to happen. predictable tedious: boring humourless slow-moving depressing unimaginative overcomplicated

violent, or dangerous. spine-tingling: making you feel very excited or frightened, in an enjoyable way.

W RI T I NG / S C RI P T P o s it iv e Negative compelling: very interesting contrived: seeming false and or exciting, so that you have to pay attention.

not natural.

mundane: ordinary and not


interesting or exciting.

boring confusing

making people think seriously about a particular subject. witty: using words in a clever and amusing way.


S P E CI AL E F F E CT S P o s it iv e stunning: very surprising or schocking. staggering: stunning; extremely great or surprising. astounding: so surprising that it is impossible to believe. astonishing: astounding.

Negative laughable: impossible to believe or be serious about, because it is so silly or bad.

ridiculous cheap

P HO T O G R A P HY POSITIVE incredible impressive breathtaking

NEGATIVE poor amateurish: not skilfully done or made.

Reviews - 3

S O N G S / T RA C K S P o s it iv e Negative outstanding dull: not interesting or exciting. impressive weak remarkable

MUSIC Positive moving: making you feel strong emotions, especially

Negative over the top: so extreme or

sadness or sympathy. rousing: making people feel excited and eager to do something. stirring: producing strong feelings or excitement in someone. haunting: sad but also beautiful and staying in your thoughts for a long time. stimulating: making you feel more active. catchy: a catchy tune or phrase is easy to remember.

unreasonable that they seem stupid or offensive. soppy: expressing love or emotions in a way that seems silly.

lively exciting

unimaginative tedious boring repetitive monotonous

L Y RI CS P o s it iv e thought-provoking profound: showing strong, serious feelings.

Negative clichĂŠd: used so much that it is not effective or does not have any meaning any longer.

meaningful: serious, important, awful or useful.

~~ FFO OR RA AS SA AM MP PLLE ER RE EV VIIE EW W,, S SE EE E M MO OD DE ELL A AN NS SW WE ER RO ON NP PA AG GE E 119999 ((ccoouurrsseebbooookk)) ~~

Reviews - 4


Useful language for writing reviews

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