Paper instructions:

Topic: For this essay, you are to select one movie that you have seen, find a review of that film by a film critic from a newspaper, and write an essay where you either agree or disagree with the critic’s assessment of the film.

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Specifics: This essay should be typed in a double-spaced, 12-point, Times New Roman font with 1″ margins on all four sides. This essay should be no less than 1,100 words and no longer than 1,400 words. This should equate to approximately 4-5 pages. In addition, you will need a Works Cited page in MLA format where you cite two sources: the film itself and the critic’s review.

Source Notes: You will have two sources for this essay. The film that you reference and quote/paraphrase will be one source, and this film should have been released no earlier than 2015. This is called a primary source. The other source will be the critic’s review. This is a secondary source, and it must come from either a print newspaper, from the website for a newspaper (I suggest the New York Times (Links to an external site.)), or from a reputable online reviewer. Rotten Tomatoes does not count as a source; however, you can use one of the critic reviews linked to on the website. If you have doubts about whether or not I will accept the source, please send me the link to the review so that I can determine its acceptability.

Your Task: As stated, you are to write an essay responding to a critic’s evaluation of the movie of your choice. You may either agree or disagree with the assessment. Both options are valid. However, I expect you to be able to support your claim through evidence that you provide from the film itself. Your essay must have five fully-developed paragraphs wherein you make your argument and provide cited evidence to support any agreement or disagreement you have.

Structure: Your essay should conform to the standard structure of a five-paragraph essay. That said, I would like to offer the following bits of structural support to aid you in your writing.

I. Introduction (1 Paragraph): This paragraph should grab the reader’s attention and draw them in. I would like this paragraph to also include a brief summary of the film’s plot. This summary should be no longer than three sentences. Your Introductory Paragraph should end with a 3-point thesis that states your Resolution (example, “This essay agrees with Mr. Ebert’s assessment” or “This essay will show that Mr. Ebert’s review was incorrect/unjust/premature/ill-informed/etc.”) and your Roadmap (a summary of the three points you will make to support the overall claim of the Resolution).

II. Body (3 Paragraphs): These paragraphs will tackle the points you make in your thesis. Each paragraph will address a single point. You will need to support your claim with evidence from the film. This can be both quotes and paraphrases, and you will cite the film according to the rules in the current MLA style guide.

III: Conclusion (1 Paragraph): Here, you will bring the essay full circle. A conclusion doesn’t just stop, but it needs to wrap up and give a sense of completeness. Restate your main points and discuss the importance of understanding things as you have laid them out.

Note: For this essay, I will allow you to write in first person. Be certain to proofread your writing so that you stay in either first or third person (never second person!) as part of your general proofreading before submitting an essay.

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