COM 208: Hollywood assignment

Credit: The Social Network

Your Hollywood assignment is to watch a movie that is aimed at a young audience, and write a review about it.
The top five reviews will be posted on Coquina, the online magazine.
The assignment is worth 20 points, so make sure not to miss it. The review is due March 21.
If idea of writing a movie review is a scary thought, just think of Ryan the Movie Critic, who is just 13 years old and writes for several newspapers in Michigan.
He has written 186 movie reviews since June 2007 and that includes 12 this year alone.
Before you write your review, read these how-to columns – here and here – to get some tips on how they are done.

Assignment guidelines:

  • Please write at least 500 words.
  • Give your opinion on why a viewer should see or not see the movie.
  • Examine the movie as if it were a cultural artifact, as done in the “Hollywood Goes to High School” textbook. What does the movie say about American society?
  • Go beyond the surface in your review. Be original. Don’t just rehash what others have said without adding anything to the conversation.
  • Back up your opinions with supporting arguments. If you say a movie had a terrible plot, explain why. Be specific.
  • Include essential details about the movie: names of key actors, running time, rating, year movie was released.
  • Also note anything that is special about the movie. Did it have a huge budget? Was it controversial in any way? Did it break new ground in technology?
  • Save a digital copy of your story. I’ll ask you to email it to me if I chose it for publication.

If you review an older movie – a movie released in 2009 or before – please include a reason why the movie is relevant now.


Keep in mind that I’ll deduct points for the following:

  • Improper grammar and punctuation, spelling
  • Vague ideas and opinions that aren’t supported by thoughtful reasons and arguments.
  • Failing to meet the 500-word requirement


  • There will be an automatic 5-point deduction for students who misspell the name of the movie title, movie studio, a character, actor, producer or director.
  • Papers containing material lifted verbatim from other reviews will receive a failing grade.
  • No late assignments accepted without an excused absence.

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