Top 10 Film Review Websites
- Posted on April 10, 2013
- By Raindance
- Leave a comment
We all like to be a critic, that’s what makes watching independent films so rewarding. When we walk out of the cinema there is nothing more delightful than spewing our own thoughts and feelings of the film we have just seen to our nearest and dearest. However, what about film review websites? If you take it upon yourself to type this into Google, get ready for a bombardment of choices.
So what are the best?
Our Top 10 film review websites
The students at Raindance Film school London came up with these film review websites. Remember – if you have any suggestions please put them into the comments box below!
1) Roger Ebert
If you are looking for the daddy of all film review websites, Roger Ebert’s has to be it. The recently deceased critic wrote in-depth reviews on nearly every film released and has an extensive back catalogue.
This really is the cream of the crop and is the Mecca of all things film.
The Guardian film section is great in print form and even better online! Their witty reviews really are well worth a look as are their numerous articles and past releases.
3) Ro tte n Tomatoes
Rotten Tomatoes gathers together all of the reviews from top publications and then averages out their scores. Bydoing this you can see what has been given a ‘fresh’ rating of over 50% and a ‘rotten’ one of under 50%.
In other words, this site separates the wheat from the chaff in order for you to select your Friday night viewing!
4) Yahoo! Movies
Yahoo movies offer upcoming film releases, those being released onto DVD and other key information. They also have a nice range of trailers available!
If you are looking for what ordinary viewing folk think of this week’s releases, there is really nowhere else than IMDB. There are countless user reviews of each film title, ranging from a 1-star review up to a 10!
6) Meta Critic
Similar to Rotten Tomatoes, this site averages out reviews and gives it a score out of 100. It also has a sub section to view their scores of other film publications!
MrQE holds over 100,000 reviews and over 900,000 articles. They have an extremely wide selection, as well as, urls to sites like New York Times, Newsday and Time Out New York.
Flixster shows cinema times, reviews, DVD releases and much, much more! You can also use this site on the go in the form of their Smartphone app.
9) Film Comment
If you are hungry for a more academic based site, then Film Comment is for you! This scholar based magazine and website has a vast range of articles, reviews and a blog.
The site’s authors write the reviews on this site and they give each title a score. As well as this, they also have a wide variety of other information on the site.
So there you have it, the top 10 film review websites. Happy viewing/critiquing everyone!
Are you interesting in writing a film review? Here are some great tips on writing a great review .
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My main innocent intent is to research and create a my own personal record of films released in the UK with dates of production and first opening in London from -ideally 1930 to 2020 as a start. But I would like to start with the 50s and 60s. So far I have not found a helpful or understanding source. Even the British Film Institute cannot help! How will I fare here?
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Ratings of imdb is also good
This is great places to find out what a movie is all about. They can also be useful for finding out if your favorite movies, watchmoviesonline24 tv shows, series,actor has been in other movies you may have missed.
For new released movies you can visit this site https://naijanet.com.ng/
Thankyou for such a valuable content. IMDB and rotten tomatoes is my personal favorite.
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Movie Reviews & Criticism: Websites
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MOVIE REVIEW QUERY ENGINE
The Internet's largest database of movie reviews for over 100,000 titles. The continually growing site provides a searchable index of all published and available reviews, news, interviews, and other materials associated with specific movies.
The unique combination of reviews, news, and user discussion—all accessed through MRQE’s search portal—allows any user to read and add to the Internet’s most comprehensive collection of opinion about film. MRQE.com is commonly abbreviated as MRQE and pronounced “marquee.”
Movie Reviews from RollingStone.com
- Filmmaker Magazine The magazine of independent film.
- Independent Film Channel The home of offbeat, unexpected comedies.
- Indiewire The leading news, information, and networking site for independent-minded filmmakers, the industry and moviegoers alike.
American Film Institute
- American Film Institute's 100 years... AFI's 100 Years...100 Movies documented AFI's celebration of cinema's centennial. Each special honors a different aspect of excellence in American film.
Internet Resources - Movie Reviews
- Rotten Tomatoes Movies, Movie Reviews, Critic Scores, Showtimes and Movie Trailers - The Ultimate Movie Database!
- IMDB - Internet Movie Database It's a huge collection of movie information. "[At IMDB] we try to catalog every pertinent detail about a movie, from who was in it, to who made it, to trivia about it, to filming locations, and even where you can find reviews and fan sites on the web. We then do our best to present this information in a manner that is easy to search and access."
- Roger Ebert - movie reviews Movie reviews, essays, interviews and the Movie Answer Man from film critic Roger Ebert and contributors.
- Metacritic Movie Reviews, TV Reviews, Game Reviews, and Music Reviews
More film criticism online
- The New York Times: movie reviews & trailers
- Los Angeles Times - Movie & DVD Reviews
- Reelviews.net Online movie reviews by American film critic, James Berardinelli . (*Lots of pop-up advertising)
- The Village Voice - Movies Reviews and news. The nation's first and largest alternative newsweekly, the Voice maintains the same tradition of no-holds-barred reporting and criticism it first embraced when it began publishing more than fifty years ago.
- The Hollywood Reporter - Movies This is the definitive interpretive voice of the entertainment industry.
- Variety.com - Film Film industry news & reviews. Recognized and respected through out the world of show business, Variety is the premier source of entertainment news.
- NPR.org Reviews of new movies, classic and art films, foreign films, and popular movies.
- Film Journal International, Movie Reviews Film Journal Int'l is a trade publication and website covering the motion picture industry, with special emphasis on theatrical exhibition. Film Reviews are from the Hollywood Reporter.
- Filmsite.org An award-winning website for classic film buffs, students, moviegoers and anyone else interested in the great movies of the last century. Detailed plot synopses, review commentary and film reference material are just some of the features available on the site.
- Academy Awards Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
- AFI - Films of the Year American Film Institute
- British Academy of Film Awards British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA)
- Directors Guild Awards Directors Guild of America
- Golden Globe Awards From the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.
- Independent Spirit Awards Celebrating the best of independent film.
- Razzie Awards The Golden Raspberry (RAZZIE) Awards honors the worst in film.
- Screen Actors Guild Awards The only televised awards shows to exclusively honor performers, it presents thirteen awards for acting in film and television.
- Hawaii International Film Festival - HIFF The Hawai'i Int'l Film Festival is dedicated to the advancement of cultural exchange and media awareness in the Pacific Rim. HIFF's programming has two particular mandates: to be a festival of record for emerging films from Asia and the Pacific, and to present the top festival films from around the world, annually screening films from over 45 countries.
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Top Ten Movie Review Sites
Taken over by his wife after his passing, Roger Ebert ’s review site covers decades of films with reviews written by leading experts on film. Including an extensive backlog of reviews written by Roger Ebert himself, if it made it to a movie theater, you will find a review of it.
The Guardian 's film section is witty and very well regarded. If you like your reviews with a dash of droll British humor, this is the site for you.
Find out which films are fresh or which ones are worth pelting by Rotten Tomatoes . What makes this review aggregate site stand out from some of the others is that it gives a reviewers’ versus audience rating for films so you can decide if the reviewers “got it wrong.”
IMDB stands for the Internet Movie Database. While this site is used by the film industry to keep track of movie projects, it has a depth of information for consumer use including reviews by fellow movie watchers. A nice bonus: the site also reviews television shows and has a search feature for finding movies when all you know are two of the actors that played in the movie.
Metacritic is also an aggregator film review site (along with other types of media) that compares critics and movie-goer’s reviews. A little more clunky to use than Rotten Tomatoes, it still offers a depth of information on each film and links to external reviews.
MrQE holds almost 140,000 reviews and over 1,100,000 articles, making it the most complete database of movie reviews on the Internet.
If you like your movies to come with a body count tally, The Action Elite is the site for you. Reviews written specifically to highlight the action genre of film, this site has articles reviewing movies both recent and old, as long as they come with a dose of adrenaline.
Covering the science fiction, fantasy and horror genres, Moria Reviews ’ articles range from movie reviews to in-depth analysis about movie themes. Theme essays also group movies into sub-genres, making it easier to find that dark fantasy splatter-punk movie of your dreams.
If Bollywood is more your style, the Times of India has an excellent review of films showing in India including movies in 11 different language categories. Whether you crave the spectacle of an all-cast dance or the dramatic historical reenactments, this site has it all.
While it is temporarily on hiatus, Film Comment is the academic answer to the question, “What if I want to know more about the social context of this film?” and other deeper plunges into film theory. The archives are still accessible and there are plans to reopen the site for more submissions in the future.
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8 Best Movie Review Websites and Podcasts
- Published March 28, 2017
- by Madeleine Coyne
Everybody has different reasons for looking up movie reviews, and everybody has different interests and levels of passion when it comes to movies. Some moviegoers look up movie reviews before seeing a movie, while other people utilize them to engage in further discussion after seeing a movie.
Some seek out movie reviews for the simple reason of needing assistance in finding a worthwhile movie to watch. Taking the time to watch a movie, whether in theaters or at home, takes a good chunk of time, and time is money. Therefore, you want to make sure that whatever movie you are about to watch will be worth your time. In addition, you might like to have some idea of what a movie is going to be like before pushing the play button.
That being said, we know that other people seek out movie reviews for completely different reasons. Some people simply want to see a quick rating number (or percentage) for a movie they are about to watch in order to see what critics thought of the movie overall. Other people want to know in-depth information about a movie and all of the questionable content it contains so that they can be prepared and know if it is an appropriate film to watch (especially if they are reviewing a film before allowing their children to watch it).
Still other people are complete and total movie buffs who want to get into the production details and hear what other like-minded “nerds” have to say about all kinds of old and obscure movies, not just the new or “popular” ones.
For this reason, we have compiled a list of all of the best places to go for movie reviews, whether you prefer reading a review online or listening to one on a podcast. Every movie lover, whether novice or expert, has a way to fill his or her movie “needs” and become a more educated moviegoer.
Podcast Audio Reviews
This show has three core hosts, but a rotating panel of critics that are all knowledgeable about movies and cinema. They review decades of movies, especially series, and discuss which ones are hits and which ones are misses. It is unique in that the critics not only review a new movie every week, but if that movie so happens to be a sequel, they review every movie in the series leading up to that new release (for example, with the new Jason Bourne movie in 2016, they reviewed all of the Bourne movies collectively). Shows generally run for at least an hour, sometimes two, but the hosts are so entertaining and knowledgeable that they do not drag. (Warning: it does contain detailed plot spoilers!) The website also includes relevant articles written by the staff and discussion forums for movie fans to talk about certain movies and topics.
Collider Movie Talk
This show is unique in that each episode is actually a video, not simply a podcast. It features roughly 5 hosts that talk about the latest in everything movie, and the episodes usually run about an hour long. It does not focus on one single movie or movie series, but on many films either coming to theaters, recently released, or old movies somehow related to the conversation. There is a lot of interesting and healthy debate among the hosts, and there are sometimes even interviews with the stars of new movies! In addition, they focus not just on film but on television too. There are sections of the website dedicated to Movie News and TV News, with insightful articles written by the Collider staff.
Mad about Movies
Published weekly and hosted by three friends, this show follows the same overall format in every episode, which is that these three guys first discuss general movie news, followed by an in-depth discussion on one highlighted, newly-released movie, followed by their weekly recommendations. The length of the episodes varies greatly (~30 min - 2 hrs), but there is wonderful chemistry among the three hosts, and they are very intellectual and funny. Their frequent “Throwback” podcasts to older movies are a lot of fun as well (such as the throwback to the original Beauty and the Beast before the release of the new, live-action adaptation of the movie). There are also special episodes with amazing interviews, or episodes relating to holidays or current events, such as an Oscars special.
This show has been recording audio movie reviews since 2005 and all episodes have been recorded by the same hosts, Hollywood critics Ann Elder and Les Roberts. Ann and Les have all the experience necessary to give an in-depth and entertaining movie review due to their past as actors, producers, and writers in Hollywood. Originally recorded on radio, their reviews have been adapted into podcasts and they continue to make new podcasts regularly. Each podcast episode discusses the plot (without giving away any major spoilers!), the script, direction, casting, and overall positive and negative elements of the movie. Ann and Les speak in a lively, conversational format, which makes it perfect for both movie buffs and novices alike. Each episode is only 7-12 minutes in length, which makes them easy to digest without having to compromise a lot of time to listen to them. In addition, new episodes are released three times a week (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday), so you never have to wait long for more! And you can search for old movie reviews on the website by title or genre to find just what you are looking for.
This is everyone’s go-to for the quick rating and low-down on movies coming to theaters, movies in theaters, and movies to rent. Rotten Tomatoes is great if you already trust their ratings and just want a sense of the general consensus about a certain movie. The “Tomatometer” gives you a percentage of their critics who gave the movie a positive review. It offers a little bit of information about the movie, although not a full plot description or review, and it shows the cast of the movie. This is followed by all the critics’ reviews (critics who have to first be approved by Rotten Tomatoes, so there are no Joe-Shmoes off the street).
This is the favorite movie review site for parents who would like to know exactly what kind of movie their child is seeing. It lays out the good, the bad, and the ugly. It gives an overview of the story before going into details on the positive and negative elements of the movie, including violence, language, and sexual content. (And they are not exclusively a movie review website--they also review TV shows, books, music, and games!)
While super helpful and revealing, it also gives a lot of spoilers and it can be a little bit too much information, especially if you are not a parent utilizing it to decide if your children can see the latest movie in theaters. We love this site for its detailed, well-written, thorough reviews.
This website is definitely for the more scholarly film buff, not for ordinary people who just enjoy watching movies for their own sake. Film Comment puts out print magazines that highlight a handful of movies with scholarly articles about different artistic aspects of these movies. These magazines are also available on their website. New issues are released bi-monthly, and they have been in circulation since 1962, so it has certainly lasted the test of time. While the articles are written on some mainstream movies, the publication seems to aim more at “art-house and avant-garde filmmaking from across the world.” Like we said, this is for the serious movie fan, the one who likes to discover obscure pictures at film festivals and who views the cinema as a kind of art form itself. It is definitely a more academic-based site. It also includes some interviews and a blog.
Even though the famed movie critic died in 2013, his work is still being continued on his website, and this website is still one of the absolute greatest, most complete houses of movie reviews. The movie reviewers are trusted critics, and their reviews are complete and fair and interesting. In addition, each review gets between one and five stars for easy, quick movie-watching decisions, as well as information about the cast and creators of the film and a discussion board that anyone can contribute to. You can search for older movies by date, genre, or rating, and there is no shortage of movies to look through on the site. We admire Roger Ebert and still trust his website, and we especially love his mantra that “No good movie is too long and no bad movie is short enough.” Again, however, there is still no way to really get to know the new movie critics who have taken over from him other than being assured that they know what they are doing.
And that completes our list of the best movie review websites and podcasts out there! We hope it is helpful and that you find the right movie review location for you!
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16 Best Movie Review Sites in 2023
A lot of people use their friends or other people they know to get advice on what movie to watch. Others look through the newspapers or watch TV to get some recommendations. But, there is a critical mass of people who consult the Internet and find movie review sites that tell them what to expect from a film. There are lots of sites full of reviews. Some of them are more prominent and feature well-known film critics, while others are genre-specific or just lesser-known.
In this article, we are going to bring you a list of the 16 best movie review sites on the Internet. Some of them are specialized sites, while others are just sections within a larger site. They’ll be ordered by personal preference so you don’t have to agree with our order but we do think you won’t have any major issues with the list itself.
1. Internet Movie Database
Description: “ IMDb (an acronym for Internet Movie Database) is an online database of information related to films, television programs, home videos, video games, and streaming content online – including cast, production crew and personal biographies, plot summaries, trivia, ratings, and fan and critical reviews. The movie and talent pages of IMDb are accessible to all internet users, but a registration process is necessary to contribute information to the site. Most data in the database is provided by volunteer contributors.
The site enables registered users to submit new material and edits to existing entries. Users with a proven track record of submitting data are given instant approval for additions or corrections to cast, credits, and other demographics of media product and personalities.
If a registered user or visitor is in the entertainment industry and has an IMDb page, then that user / visitor can add photos to that page by enrolling in IMDbPRO. There is no single index of contributors, no index on each profile page of the items contributed, and (except for plot synopses and biographies) no identification of contributors to each product’s or person’s data pages. Users are also invited to rate any film on a scale of 1 to 10, and the totals are converted into a weighted mean-rating that is displayed beside each title, with online filters employed to deter ballot-stuffing. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: By far the most popular site on our list, the legendary IMDb is the ultimate reference point for most Internet users. It has the largest movie database on the internet and while the ratings are user-generated, it also links official reviews and has a section for external reviewers. IMDb is by far the most commonly used reference point when movie reviews are concerned.
2. Rotten Tomatoes
Description: “ Rotten Tomatoes and the Tomatometer score are the world’s most trusted recommendation resources for quality entertainment. As the leading online aggregator of movie and TV show reviews from critics, we provide fans with a comprehensive guide to what’s Fresh – and what’s Rotten – in theaters and at home.
And the Tomatometer is just the beginning. We also serve movie and TV fans with original editorial content on our site and through social channels, produce fun and informative video series, and hold live events for fans across the country, with our ‘Your Opinion Sucks’ live shows. If you’re an entertainment fan looking for a recommendation, or to share an opinion, you’ve come to the right place.
Rotten Tomatoes has assembled a team of curators whose job it is to read thousands of movie and TV reviews weekly. The team collects movie and TV reviews from Tomatometer-approved critics and publications every day, generating Tomatometer scores. Our curators carefully read these reviews, noting if the reviews are Fresh or Rotten, and choose a representative pull-quote. Tomatometer-approved critics can also self-submit their reviews. ” (from rottetomatoes.com)
Rationale: Rotten Tomatoes, although not as popular as IMDb, has become a major player in the review industry. Unlike IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes is a review aggregator that bases its scores on certified reviews gathered around the Internet, but it also has a user score section. The main issue with Rotten Tomatoes compared to IMDb is that it has a much smaller database.
Description: “ It began as a simple idea back in the summer of 1999: a single score could summarize the many entertainment reviews available for a movie or a video game. Metacritic’s three founding members—all former attorneys who were happy to find a more constructive but less profitable use of their time—launched the site in January 2001 and Metacritic has evolved over the last decade to reflect their experience distilling many critics’ voices into the single Metascore, a weighted average of the most respected critics writing reviews online and in print.
Metacritic’s mission is to help consumers make an informed decision about how to spend their time and money on entertainment. We believe that multiple opinions are better than one, user voices can be as important as critics, and opinions must be scored to be easy to use. ” (from metacritic.com)
Rationale: Metacritic functions on the same basis as Rotten Tomatoes – it aggregates reviews from different sources and then calculates its scores, but also has user scores as well. Its database is about the same size when movies are concerned, but unlike Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic also has a section dedicated to music and video games.
Description: “ Welcome to the newly refreshed RogerEbert.com, the world’s preeminent destination for movie criticism, commentary and community. Ever since the passing of the site’s co-founder and namesake, Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic Roger Ebert, in 2013, it has been run by his wife, Chaz Ebert. Chaz has been guiding the current redesign in conjunction with celebrated web developer Table XI, IT consultant, Myrin New, Ebert Company executive, Sonia Evans, and Managing Editor, Brian Tallerico to ensure that Roger’s passion for movies, decades of essential reviews, and ability to connect with readers serve as the site’s foundation.
Chaz with her team of professional editors (Brian Tallerico, Matt Zoller Seitz, Nick Allen, Matt Fagerholm and Nell Minow), continues to maintain Roger’s high standards for providing timeless insights in cinematic discourse, while exploring the latest releases with coverage penned by a diverse array of esteemed writers.
We will continue to bring not only current reviews of films from major studios, but one of the most comprehensive coverages of reviews from independent and documentary filmmakers, as well as reviews of leading television or cable series and shows from various streaming platforms.
In this new and improved iteration of RogerEbert.com, you will find more user-friendly features, faster loading with improved search engine optimization, a Collections section of movies by genre, cleaner more aesthetically pleasing graphics, and many other delights. Interviews with noted filmmakers will be enhanced by more video and print features, as well as features paying tribute to events in the world of cinema, and even life itself. ” (from rogerebert.com)
Rationale: The legacy of the legendary Roger Ebert, arguably the best film critic to ever write a review anywhere in the world, is continued on the site that bears his name. Ebert himself was the main editor of the site until his death, but his legacy still continues as his former collaborators decided to keep it up and running, adding new content daily. This is a specialized review site written by certified critics and contains only those movies reviewed by the site’s writers and has no user content.
Description: “ Since launching on July 15, 1996, IndieWire has grown into the leading news, information and networking site for independent-minded filmmakers, the industry and moviegoers alike. Originally conceived as an online forum and newsletter for filmmakers and festivals, IndieWire has grown over the last two decades into a preeminent source for film and television news, reviews, interviews, global festival coverage and more.
Our mission has always been to create a platform to deliver news, information and other resources to creators and movie lovers, while facilitating a greater appreciation of independent filmmaking to the masses. ” (from. indiewire.com)
Rationale: IndieWire has been an industry pillar for independent moviemakers for more than 20 years now and is the best reference point when the American indie scene is concerned. The reviews are written by professionals and there is no user content, but there are several sections that cover a lot of different aspects of the indie movie scene.
6. The Guardian
Description: “ The Guardian is a British daily newspaper. It was founded in 1821 as The Manchester Guardian, and changed its name in 1959. Along with its sister papers The Observer and The Guardian Weekly, The Guardian is part of the Guardian Media Group, owned by the Scott Trust.
The trust was created in 1936 to “secure the financial and editorial independence of The Guardian in perpetuity and to safeguard the journalistic freedom and liberal values of The Guardian free from commercial or political interference”. As of February 2020, its print edition had a daily circulation of 126,879. The newspaper has an online edition, TheGuardian.com, as well as two international websites, Guardian Australia (founded in 2013) and Guardian US (founded in 2011).
The paper’s readership is generally on the mainstream left of British political opinion, and its reputation as a platform for social liberal and left-wing editorial has led to the use of the “Guardian reader” and “Guardianista” as often-pejorative epithets for those of left-leaning or “politically correct” tendencies. Frequent typographical errors during the age of manual typesetting led Private Eye magazine to dub the paper the “Grauniad” in the 1960s, a nickname still used occasionally by the editors for self-mockery.
While The Guardian’s print circulation is in decline, the report indicated that news from The Guardian, including that reported online, reaches more than 23 million UK adults each month. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: The Guardian is a reliable source of information from all fields, as it is a real news portal (and a newspaper), but it’s also noted for its film review section, which we have linked. Guardian’s professional reviewer cover a lot of movies and you won’t find a relevant contemporary title that’s not on the site. There is no user content.
7. The New York Times
Description: “ The New York Times (NYT or NY Times) is an American daily newspaper based in New York City with a worldwide readership. Founded in 1851, the Times has since won 130 Pulitzer Prizes (the most of any newspaper), and has long been regarded within the industry as a national “newspaper of record”. It is ranked 18th in the world by circulation and 3rd in the U.S. A Rasmussen Reports survey on perceptions of bias found that the Times is perceived as having a liberal bias.
The paper is owned by The New York Times Company, which is publicly traded. It has been governed by the Sulzberger family since 1896, through a dual-class share structure after its shares became publicly traded. A. G. Sulzberger and his father, Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. — the paper’s publisher and the company’s chairman, respectively — are the fourth and fifth generation of the family to head the paper. Since the mid-1970s, The New York Times has expanded its layout and organization, adding special weekly sections on various topics supplementing the regular news, editorials, sports, and features.
Since 2008, the Times has been organized into the following sections: News, Editorials / Opinions-Columns / Op-Ed, New York (metropolitan), Business, Sports, Arts, Science, Styles, Home, Travel, and other features. On Sundays, the Times is supplemented by the Sunday Review (formerly the Week in Review), The New York Times Book Review, The New York Times Magazine, and T: The New York Times Style Magazine. The Times stayed with the broadsheet full-page set-up and an eight-column format for several years after most papers switched to six, and was one of the last newspapers to adopt color photography, especially on the front page. The paper’s motto, “All the News That’s Fit to Print”, appears in the upper left-hand corner of the front page. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: We all know that The New York Times is one of the most respectable newspapers around the world, and that it is responsible for some of the greatest examples of journalism in history. Still, the site also has a very strong movie reviews section which is up to date with all the newest movies and can be considered very reliable.
8. Chicago Sun-Times
Description: “ The Chicago Sun-Times is a daily newspaper published in Chicago, Illinois, United States. It is the flagship paper of the Sun-Times Media Group, and has the second largest circulation among Chicago newspapers, after the Chicago Tribune. The modern paper grew out of the 1948 merger of the Chicago Sun and the Chicago Daily Times. Journalists at the paper have received eight Pulitzer prizes, mostly in the 1970s; one recipient was film critic Roger Ebert (1975), who worked at the paper from 1967 until his death in 2013.
Ownership of the paper has changed hands numerous times, including twice in the late 2010s. The Chicago Sun-Times claims to be the oldest continuously published daily newspaper in the city. That claim is based on the 1844 founding of the Chicago Daily Journal, which was also the first newspaper to publish the rumor, now believed false, that a cow owned by Catherine O’Leary was responsible for the Chicago fire.
The modern paper grew out of the 1948 merger of the Chicago Sun, founded by Marshall Field III on December 4, 1941, and the Chicago Daily Times (which had dropped the “Illustrated” from its title). The newspaper was owned by Field Enterprises, controlled by the Marshall Field family, which acquired the afternoon Chicago Daily News in 1959 and launched WFLD television in 1966.
When the Daily News ended its run in 1978, much of its staff, including Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Mike Royko, were moved to the Sun-Times. During the Field period, the newspaper had a populist, progressive character that leaned Democratic but was independent of the city’s Democratic establishment. Although the graphic style was urban tabloid, the paper was well regarded for journalistic quality and did not rely on sensational front-page stories. It typically ran articles from The Washington Post / Los Angeles Times wire service. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: Although another newspaper like the two we mentioned above, the Chicago Sun-Times has a very strong movie reviewing tradition, as its most famous writer ever was the legendary Roger Ebert. The reviews today are mostly written by Richard Roeper, one of Ebert’s collaborators, which is why we think that this site’s review section has some importance.
9. Screen Rant
Description: “ Screen Rant had a humble start back in 2003 and, in the years since, has grown into one of the largest and most-respected entertainment news sources in the world – serving over 232 million readers in 2018 alone. We don’t just report news, we editorialize it with unique insight that engages everyone from casual entertainment lovers to hardcore movie buffs. With television, film, and video game news, reviews, podcasts, and a YouTube channel with over 6.5 million subscribers, Screen Rant is the ultimate geek entertainment destination.
SR editors report from the pop culture events our readers (new and returning) love most. Passionate cinephiles, TV addicts, gamers, and comic book readers, the Screen Rant team comes from diverse backgrounds in film studies, creating writing, video production, and business management brought together by a passion for all things entertainment and a goal of providing the best , as well as most engaging, content possible for visitors to our site. ” (from screenrant.com)
Rationale: Screen Rant is one of the industry’s biggest online players and a site dedicated to entertainment. It has a variety of sections and a lot of great writers, which more than makes up for its lack of user content. The reviews from Screen Rant are usually considered to be the most trustworthy around the web.
Description: “ Empire is a British film magazine published monthly by Bauer Consumer Media. The first issue (June / July 1989) was published in May 1989. David Hepworth of Emap, the publisher of British music magazines Q and Smash Hits, among other titles, came up with the idea to publish a magazine similar to Q, but for films. They recruited Smash Hits editor, Barry McIlheney, to edit the new magazine, with Hepworth as Editorial Director. Hepworth produced a one-page document of what he wanted to achieve.
Among them, they planned to review and rate every film that was released in the cinema in the United Kingdom. It also said that “Empire believes that movies can sometimes be art, but they should always be fun.” The first edition (June / July 1989) was published in May 1989 with Dennis Quaid and Winona Ryder on the front cover from the film Great Balls of Fire !. The first issue reached its target of 50,000 copies sold. Film reviews were given a star rating between 1 and 5, with no half stars. A compilation of their film reviews was published in 2006 as the Empire Film Guide. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: Empire is a specialized British film magazine and is, in that aspect, one of the most trustworthy sources from the media industry. It has a lot of different sections covering a lot of fields from the world of media but is also known for its professional critics, who are among the most reliable in the field.
Description: “ IGN (an abbreviation of its former name Imagine Games Network) is an American video game and entertainment media website operated by IGN Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Ziff Davis, itself wholly owned by j2 Global. The company is located in San Francisco’s SOMA district and is headed by its former editor-in-chief, Peer Schneider. The IGN website was the brainchild of media entrepreneur Chris Anderson and launched on September 29, 1996. It focuses on games, films, television, comics, technology, and other media.
Originally a network of desktop websites, IGN is now also distributed on mobile platforms, console programs on the Xbox and PlayStation, FireTV, Roku, and via YouTube, Twitch, Hulu, and Snapchat. Originally, IGN was the flagship website of IGN Entertainment, a website which owned and operated several other websites oriented towards players’ interests, games, and entertainment, such as Rotten Tomatoes, GameSpy, GameStats, VE3D, TeamXbox, Vault Network, FilePlanet, and AskMen, among others. IGN was sold to publishing company Ziff Davis in February 2013 and now operates as a J2 Global subsidiary. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: We couldn’t, of course, make a list without IGN, one of the largest players in the online industry. IGN covers everything from movies to video games, from news and exclusives to interviews and reviews, and is a respectable go-to if you need reliable information. There is no user content, but there is plenty of trustworthy reviews.
12. The Hollywood Reporter
Description: “ The Hollywood Reporter (THR) is an American digital and print magazine, and website, which focuses on the Hollywood film, television, and entertainment industries. It was founded in 1930 as a daily trade paper, and in 2010 switched to a weekly large-format print magazine with a revamped website. Headquartered in Los Angeles, THR is part of the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, and is owned by MRC (formerly Valence Media), a holding company co-founded by Todd Boehly – an executive of its previous owners, Guggenheim Partners and Eldridge Industries . ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: The Hollywood Reporter has been an industry brand for years and it its printed editions, as well as its online articles, are among the most reliable sources when it comes to the movie industry. The magazine has since expanded into other areas such as gaming but has retained its review section which is one of the better you’ll find out there.
13. The Rolling Stone
Description: “ Rolling Stone is an American monthly magazine that focuses on popular culture. It was founded in San Francisco, California, in 1967 by Jann Wenner, and the music critic Ralph J. Gleason. It was first known for its coverage of rock music and for political reporting by Hunter S. Thompson. In the 1990s, the magazine broadened and shifted its focus to a younger readership interested in youth-oriented television shows, film actors, and popular music. It has since returned to its traditional mix of content, including music, entertainment, and politics.
The first magazine was released in 1967 and featured John Lennon on the cover and was published every two weeks. It is known for provocative photography and its cover photos, featuring musicians, politicians, athletes, and actors. In addition to its print version in the United States, it publishes content through Rollingstone.com and numerous international editions. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: Like most magazines on our list, The Rolling Stone has a firm reputation as one of the most reliable media sources out there. It covers a wide array of artistic fields, including music and movies, and has a series of high-quality writers and reviewers who regularly contribute to the site. The magazine’s reviews are among the most reliable ones.
Description: “ Variety is an American media company owned by Penske Media Corporation. The company was founded by Sime Silverman in New York City in 1905 as a weekly newspaper reporting on theater and vaudeville. In 1933 it added Daily Variety, based in Los Angeles, to cover the motion-picture industry. Variety.com features breaking entertainment news, reviews, box office results, cover stories, videos, photo galleries and features, plus a credits database, production charts and calendar, with archive content dating back to 1905. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: Variety is another big player on the media scene and a magazine that is not specialized for cinema, but has a strong movie coverage. Variety’s reviews are often cited around the web and its professional reviewers are considered to be among the best you can find, which is why we highly recommend it as a source.
15. Vanity Fair
Description: “ Vanity Fair is an American magazine published since 1983 by Condé Nast Publications. The magazine took its current form from the 1980s thanks to a relaunch promoted by the owner of Condè Nast himself, the famous Si Newhouse, and thanks to the direction of British journalists Tina Brown and Graydon Carter.
In addition to some controversial photo cases, the magazine is also known for its quality articles. In 1996, journalist Marie Brenner wrote a denunciation article about the tobacco industry entitled “The Man Who Knew Too Much”; the article was then made into the film Insider – Behind the truth (1999). Also, the magazine revealed, in May 2005, after more than thirty years of mystery, the name of the person who informed The Washington Post of the Watergate scandal, W. Mark Felt. Many celebrity interviews have been published.
Seeking to keep the connection with Hollywood and American pop culture, Vanity Fair throws an exclusive Academy Awards party at Morton’s restaurant. Additionally, the annual Hollywood issue collects photos of Academy Award nominations. The magazine’s success became a case study for Toby Young’s book, How to Lose Friends and Alienate People. ” (from Wikipedia)
Rationale: Vanity Fair is much more than just a movie magazine and although it is probably better known for its fashion and lifestyle editorials, it has a strong cinema section and we thought it deserved a spot on our list. The magazine’s professional critics are often quoted on different sites and we thought it would be fitting to close our list with this site.
16. Film Companion
Description: Film Companion is a celebration of the movies. It’s a platform that is committed to quality journalism, which is well-researched and balanced, and isn’t paid news. We bring you engaging and informative content on movies that include, reviews of films and web shows, interviews, film festival news, features and masterclasses.
Unlike other sites on this list, Film Companion not only brings you big-budget Hollywood reviews, but it also brings you Bollywood, Malayalam, Telugu and movie reviews from other territories (not that well known to western culture) for you to explore.
They also review short movies, and that is also something not many websites on this list can boast about.
Rationale: Film Companion offers a lot of new movie reviews that not many sites on this list even bother to look at. If you are someone willing to explore new cultures, you should go and take a look at their unbiased high-quality movie reviews.
Arthur S. Poe is a writer based in Europe. He has a Ph.D. and speaks five languages. His expertise varies from Alfred Hitchcock movies to Bleach, as he has explored a lot of fictional Universes and authors. He is currently focusing on anime, his childhood love, with special atten...
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