@synth_cinema: Scores Explained


Scores Explained


Okay time for some nebulous rambling. While I have to admit that ten star ratings do offer some nuance, they often confuse me. At the very best they feel uncertain or vague, and as a result I've often tried to explore the pros and cons of any given film in the review which should speak for itself. But I have to ask... how much worse than nine is eight? Is everything below six worthless? How far above five out of ten stops being average? There's just too much going on and I don't really like it. I don't things that are different. Admittedly there are many levels that need to be expressed at certain times, but they're usually levels of bad. Sorry video-on-demand movie makers, but those are the cases which I usually require a way to distinguish a three from a four out of ten.

Here I try and stick to using a simple five points rating, from great... to irate. To make a solid decision and not mess around with half points. Which again I often use when cataloguing movies elsewhere. But in the end these are basically satisfaction ratings, so don't expect one particular three star movie to be comparable to another in a straight up way. Things that work in one instance may not in another, and a mid tier action film and a mid tier drama have to work in their own right; inside their own genre. There are many factors to consider, these are simply how satisfied I felt at the end of the day when considering the overall elements. Maybe I'm just overthinking all of this and should stop worrying about it. Anyway, here's the run down of each tier.

5/5 ☆☆☆☆
Flawless victory? Well I suppose no film is really ever perfect. Except when they are? This one is a big personal preference, and as a result it's a rare score given to those movies which give me a certain vibe or a particular feeling. A kind of indescribable magic. Something that really strikes a nerve or leaves a mark. Often they'll be films that I have seen many times before and have grown to be appreciated or considered to have this sort of status with time, but every so often one will come along. A rare score from me. Platinum medal.

4/5 ☆☆☆☆
A good movie and a standard recommendation. Some flaws may be present but they can be overlooked as it's still a satisfying experience or a solid package overall. Very entertaining, or consistently engaging. No anticlimaxes or weak acts during the narrative unless they're very minor. Whether or not I would consider watching it multiple times is another question but there are qualities here to be considered. Above average if perhaps not always exceptional.  
Gold medal.

3/5 ☆☆
Disappointing in some ways but still okay on the whole. A story that falls down due to notable flaws but isn't a total train wreck. Has some good points to talk about but is never brilliant except perhaps in short bursts. Perhaps still very watchable or even something I like to revisit frequently, but never excellent outside a few memorable moments. Perhaps one element spoils the fun or it's just not exceptional overall. This is where things get sketchy and an average or vaguely acceptable film can get the same score as a mild let down. It's a bit wishy washy but perhaps so is the movie itself.  

Silver medal.

2/5 ☆☆
Below average with big flaws that detract from the film and can't be ignored. There may be things I like but they're not enough to win me over. Often a big failure to capitalise on certain elements in what might have been a good idea but was poorly executed. Perhaps the pieces are all here but they've been scattered rendering them almost useless. Not rock bottom but doesn't go anywhere towards being likeable or even watchable either. A failure to be consistently interesting or a film that just becomes boring outside a few scenes.  
Bronze medal.

Utterly useless, or truly annoying. The good points are barely visible or are totally overshadowed; it's just sunk by too many holes. Incredibly disappointing or tedious. Sometimes simple movie making incompetence is shown, but it may be very dull or very irritating. Maybe both. A total failure to bring imagination or creativity to the table, even when there's a big budget or a big brand involved.
Stone medal.