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Five Stars! How to Become a Film Critic, the World's Greatest Job [Kindle Edition]

Christopher Null
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $9.99

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Book Description


So you want to be a film critic and review movies for a living? Veteran film critic Christopher Null teaches you, step by step, how to break into the business with the lessons he's learned from more than a decade in the industry.

FIVE STARS will teach you all you need to know!

- Understand movie history and the mechanics of filmmaking -- without the film snob jargon!
- Learn how to write a review, step by step
- Get into every movie for free and never pay to go to the movies again!
- Get free DVDs -- before anyone else!
- Break into professional writing in newspapers, magazines, and online
- Launch a movie review website, recruit staff, and start your own business as a critic
- Learn how to approach editors -- from the experts themselves
- Build an audience for your work
- Interview celebrities and hang out with the stars!

FIVE STARS is an absolute must-read for any aspiring film critic!

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The founder of the Web site offers his take on the business and philosophy of film crit, based on his experiences with the site. Null focuses on the Internet as "the world's great media liberator," and argues that it's the best way for a beginner to get published. He then, over about 100 pages, takes the reader through the mechanics of actually writing a review. For someone just starting out this may be the most valuable part of the book, from sections on "Judging Cinematography" to internalizing "The Point of a Movie Review." Later chapters on the business aspects of film writing ease neophytes into a difficult market. Null also includes a list of "300 Must-See Films for the Aspiring Critic," a good starting point for anyone looking to learn more about the movies. While this is a useful book for those who simply want to write reviews for a blog-sized audience, writers looking to break into prestige publications should probably seek advice elsewhere.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Anyone who wants to know about film reviewing ... would do well to read this book! -- BookPleasures, June 2005

I guarantee you will come away watching movies with a different – and more informed – perspective -- Blogcritics, July 2005

Neophyte reviewers will be far better prepared for the rigors of popular cinema -- James Wegg Review, August 2005

Null is like a film professor you always wanted, but never had. -- Film Threat, July 2005

a can't miss proposition for would-be critics and filmmaking hobbyists -- MyMac, June 2005

a fantastic little book! ... a very solid investment! -- Hollywood Bitchslap, July 2005

a gem! -- New York Resident, August 2005

a truly marvelous guide to making your dreams a reality, without all the snobby film school bunk -- Rangelife, June 2005

an honest, clear and thorough guide to becoming a film critic -- The Compulsive Reader, August 2005

essential reading for wannabe film critics! -- Memosaic, June 2005

Product Details

  • File Size: 530 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Sutro Press; 2 edition (March 1, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0015VI4YW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,268 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars makes it easy August 10, 2005
By Robert
If you're one of the millions who dream of turning your love of cinema into a lifelong vocation, you need to read Five Stars. This is the only book on the market today that tells you, step by step, exactly how to break into this business.

Without weighing you down with a bunch of worthless theory that means nothing in the real world, Five Stars quickly gets down to the nitty gritty. In this book, Christopher Null, one of the most widely published and respected movie critics on the internet, walks you through every phase of your personal development on the path to a successful career.

The tips in Five Stars clearly show you how to:

-Educate yourself about the larger world of cinema

-Become a smarter and more active movie goer

-Communicate your thoughts coherently

-Write lively, entertaining movie reviews

-Find outlets to publish your work

Even with the best guidance in the world, becoming a successful film critic isn't easy. But Five Stars will arm you with the knowledge you need to roll up your sleeves and put your talent to work. Whether you're a young upstart with a passion for movies or an established critic with years of experience, this book is a must-have for your personal library.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What other rating could you give it? July 1, 2005
"Five Stars" deserves five stars.

I read an early edition from Sutro Press, and "Five Stars" is truly a marvelous guide to making your dreams a reality, without any film school snobbery to weigh it down. The book surveys all the stuff you need to know to write credibly about movies, coaches you through the writing process, and even provides excellent tips on how to get your words published.

The author is a web entrepreneur, a seasoned magazine editor, and even a novelist, so he really knows what he's writing about, and that really comes through in the book. Whether you want to pursue film review as a career or even as an occasional hobby, or you just want to go see a lot of new movies and DVDs for free, this book is a fabulous way to start.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The definitive book on movies and being a film critic October 3, 2005
Other reviewers have gone into great detail about what's in this book so I won't repeat their efforts. Simply put, this book is written by a critic, Christopher Null, which knows movies and can put that knowledge on paper in an informative and still entertaining way. Each point he makes in this book includes at least one movie as an example and it's obvious by the movie titles he lists that he has watched thousands of them. This is a must buy for anyone that wants to be a film critic (or already believe they are one) and a highly recommended purchase for those of you, like me, that simply love watching movies.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Informitive August 5, 2009
By Gibson
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Five Stars! gets five stars from me. Tells you how to break down a movie ,write a synopsis ,and how to break into the business.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Your movie reviews suck March 25, 2014
By DSJump
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
More about reviewing than actual criticism. Still, this one can help one in one' struggle to bring out one's inner Ebert.
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More About the Author

Christopher Null is an award-winning journalist, editor, and columnist. He is best known as the founding editor of, which was launched in 1995 and acquired by American Movie Classics in 2009.

Null founded Mobile PC magazine in 2003, the first ever periodical focused exclusively on mobile technology, before spending 4 1/2 years writing about tech daily for Yahoo! as "The Working Guy."

Null has also worked for a variety of technology and business publications, and today he continues to write regularly for Wired, PC World, and the iPad magazine The Daily. He has been the technology columnist for Executive Travel magazine (published by American Express) since 2008.

Today Null runs a media company, Null Media, which provides editorial consulting, strategic direction, and writing services to media and non-media companies alike.

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