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Film Podcast: Top Tips for Film Critics

Film Feature by Chris Olson

Film Podcast: Top Tips for Film Critics

Being a film critic was a journey that started for me in 2010, working in Plymouth, Devon. I was a Customer Host for First Great Western, essentially serving coffee on the trains. It was a really enjoyable job for many reasons, in particular the time it afforded me to read.

Often I would work the route from Plymouth to London Paddington and on the way back another Host would take over around Exeter - working the train from there down to Penzance. This would give me one of the most serene experiences: reading my copies of Empire Film Magazine sitting in First Class (because I was staff) whilst viewing the gorgeous coastline around Dawlish and Teignmouth.

This story of British rail travel is my origin story because it was walking home from a shift that I decided I would be a film critic - I wanted to be like the writers I was reading every day on the train. Not long after, I moved to London and started writing for some of those free magazines you get through the door (sorry about that) and then started my own blog.

In 2012 I set up UK Film Review, without much knowledge about web design or SEO, and started writing film reviews in a more professional manner. Since then, I have been incredibly fortunate enough to come across numerous others who also want to be film critics and have been generous with their time, effort and talent to help grow the site to the place it is today.

That's why my latest Film Podcast Episode is dedicated to those of you at the earliest stages of your film critic journey. Perhaps some of you are even reading this on a train (spooky!) and are connecting with the feelings I had all those years ago.

In the episode "Top Tips for Film Critics" , I go through the fundamentals of writing film reviews, as well as some handy shortcuts on getting ahead of the pack when it comes to pitching to publications as well as networking in the film industry. It is by no means a full account of everything I have gone through as a film critic but it is a bitesize tutorial that I hope you will find useful. Have a listen using the player below or feel free to seek out the episode on your podcast platform of choice.


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