JR – Which would you vote for if they were up against each other in a competition like the AWC or the Directors’ Cup?
Forget about the stars. It’s more important about what is said, than what is the score given. However, if you must use stars, don’t be afraid of using the whole spectrum and don’t hold 5 star to some rare phenomenom or else your entire review system will be a slave to that rare 5 star review.
I’ve often wondered why people don’t use a percentage. Five stars is very limiting, especially in the cases where you can’t even have a half star. A percentage has a fine gradation, and only a perfect film would get 100%, but a near perfect would get a 98 or 99% – sounds better to me :o)
EDIT – how do you get the percentage sign to appear here??
“Forget about the stars. It’s more important about what is said, than what is the score given. However, if you must use stars, don’t be afraid of using the whole spectrum and don’t hold 5 star to some rare phenomenom or else your entire review system will be a slave to that rare 5 star review.”
I agree. It’s actually kind of weird to place too much importance on ratings. One is actually trying to convert their complicated, abstract thoughts and feelings about a film into a concrete, specific number. The most precise rating system will never be able to do this. That being said, I which we could give half ratings.
Shift-five? %%% Unless you’re on some sort of international keyboard…
I used to rate and it would drive me nuts while watching a film. I kept getting bogged down in this abstract notion of “quality,” which is definitely not an essentialist notion — ‘artistic quality’ is a construct. Even when I simplified my IMDb-based ten-point system to “Dislike/Ambivalent/Recommended/Highly Recommended,” thoughts about how to peg a film down invaded my viewing experience. Now I don’t worry about rating at all. It’s liberating.
Oh, that’s funny, I typed five percentage signs and 3 came out. I think that the percentage sign is part of some html coding, so if you type two of them with text in between, they disappear and do something to that text…what, I don’t know.
EDIT Never mind, I was messing around with the percent signs.
My ratings are subjective. But I think adding a film to your favorites is giving it much higher praise than assigning five stars to it.
The only non-subjective thing about my ratings is that even if I hate a film I will often give it 2 stars, if I think it has any merit. Never more than two however.
5 stars for me is 9.0 to 10.0
Totally agree with you, Vincent. I love Vive L’amour and Sopyonje but rarely rate a movie 5 stars.
The 5 star rating is terrible for a site like this especially when you can’t rate anything a big fat zero. It’s perfect for something like Netflix where to people something is either really, really good or sucked so bad but sites like this need a bit more wiggle room than 5 stars be it an extra half star or a 10 point system.
How about a 1-7 dot system based on the MUBI logo?
I think every film is perfect. True, I think some perfect films are terrible, but who am I to say they’re ‘wrong’? My ability (or lackthereof) to conceive of and appreciate the ways in which they can be and are appreciated by others reflects nothing about the perfection (or lackthereof) of a film. And who says that one form of perfection is not better than another? A perfect, unbroken take of a flower slowly blooming is a beautiful image – but unless it’s in a time lapse it’s really difficult to appreciate the perfection. It almost looks stationary. But it’s not! That’s the beauty of film. It can record even the most minute detail. And I can’t. Because I am imperfect, impatient, and fickle.
What I’m trying to say is this: Who cares?
I have no problem with it, out of about 400 ratings, around 150 of them have been 5 stars. For me a 5 star film is a film I wouldn’t change even if I had the chance, so this can go for anything that keeps me happy. This could be Wings of Desire or Sodesberg’s Ocean’s 11, it doesn’t matter as long as I love it.
^WHOA. That’s a lot of movies you’ve rated 5 stars. Close to half the movies you see on here. I think a lot of us would rather have a bigger rating scale so we can really be precise of what we thought since most people look at ratings and not reviews. Most people view movies as really bad, or in your case, really good, so a 5 star rating system doesn’t bode well for anyone who wants to view films a bit more seriously.
I think the problem with most places that use a 10 point system is that their userbase isn’t smart enough to utilize it correctly. I think everyone who found this place would benefit from something smarter than the average 5 star system.
RATINGS?.. I don’t take them seriously… 5 stars is about as reliable a system as ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’ is; too black & white for a commentary that deserves a considerably more detailed account of where one stands… I judge on how the film makes me ‘think and feel overall’… A 5 to me doesn’t mean it was a perfectly made film, it means i enjoyed it alot, for whatever reasons… I don’t rate 1 or 2 stars, because i don’t ‘list’ or ‘fan’ any film that i wouldn’t recommend, and in most cases, i woundn’t recommend seeing a 1 or 2 star rated film.
There was a pizza place down the street that called themselves the 5 star pizza. Not soon after that, another one opened up and gave themselves the nickname seven star pizza. Take them withing reason, but if the only thing you can hang your name on is a star rating, then why do you make a film in the first place? Stars also burn out. One day we may think that American Beauty is the defining film of a generation and ten years down the road it may not have the same impact.
“One day we may think that American Beauty is the defining film of a generation and ten years down the road it may not have the same impact.”
I think we have already arrived at that dip in the road.
My approach to notation is the following : I think of all the films I’ve ever seen and sort them from best to worst. Then i divide in 5 for example. So there’s a lot of 5s, Fritz Lang’s, Tarkovsky’s, Kubrick’s… there’s a website that was just created called moki.tv where people can import their reviews from imdb and their notes.
Basically the homepage is endless posters of films that can be sorted out by ratings. It’s interesting because I think if you want you can have the same kind of mental hierarchy for the films you like…
I was about to start a topic expressing the same frustrations in the OP. Since becoming a member on this site, I’ve began to second (and third and fourth) guess a good deal of my ratings, despite the fact that it isn’t really important how many stars a film gets, as it is indeed reductive and at times seemingly impossible. So, I just wanted to give this a bump and hear some more thoughts on how people decide which films deserve a five star, the difference between a four and five star film, how lenient you are, what you forgive, do you rate simply on impact and enjoyment or does a film have to seem culturally/societally significant? Can it just be damn entertaining or do you have to connect with it emotionally? What type of flaws hold a film back from attaining a five from you and what does a film need to have in order for you to overlook said flaws and give it a five anyway?
Seems like a lot of you don’t take ratings all that seriously, which is probably healthier behavior ;) I’ve found it a lot easier to rate films I hate or dislike rather than ones I like.
I actually use the 4 star rating system, only because I find it much more simple and streamlined. 5 stars is just too much for me. I will say however, my view on what is a 4 star film (or even a 3 star film) has changed over the years. I used to only give 4 stars to two or three films a year. But now I’ve become a bit more lenient and pretty much all of the films in my top ten list for the year are 4 stars.
3 stars: good, meets my expectations, and was pleasantly enjoyable.
3.5 stars: very good, exceeded my expectations, might be very impressive within it’s genre
4 stars: excellent, I loved it, moved me, inspired me
For movies under 3 stars, I usually leave the theater underwhelmed or disappointed. Most of the films that I see that fall into this category I rate 2.5 stars. I don’t see many films that are 2 stars or below (maybe 5 a year).
The only films I rate on Mubi are 5 stars. Personally I have too much trouble deciding between 2 and 3 or 3 and 4 to rate all the films I’ve seen. 5 star ratings are easy. My rule is if a film is in my favorites then I give it 5 stars. If it isn’t then it doesn’t get a rating.
I rate my favorites 5 stars so that when my followers look at one of these films they’ll see on the side that I highly recommend it.
I currently have 314 favorites.
I have just 36 pieces rated five stars, but I haven’t gone through all the cartoons.
I think too mnay people rate films five stars, but to each their own.
Something really has to blow me away fro me to rate it a five.
And if we were on a 1-10 rating, I’d have even fewer pieces rated Perfectly.
I agree with Uli… something really has to blow me away to get five stars… and it can blow me away however it wants. Lately I haven’t felt as interested in rating movies, though, which is a little bit scary, since it’s a good way to keep track of what I’ve seen and what my opinion on it was.
“And if we were on a 1-10 rating, I’d have even fewer pieces rated Perfectly.”
Well, yes, because the fifth start would be broken into stars 9 and 10. Don’t understand the reluctance to rate 5 stars, though, not all five star ratings are equal. It’s a linear continuum, not just as set of points with nothing in between.
Rating 5 Stars is like telling a girl you love her, telling to many girls that and love loses it meaning.
Not if you mean it.
I’ve never seen what the big deal is with star ratings, much less agonized over them. Saying if a film is “good” or “bad” (which is all a star rating does) is worthless unless it is followed by an explanation. The value of an opinionis not inherent. It comes from the reasoning behind it and nothing else.
That said, when I use star ratings I do so based in large part on what the film was trying to achieve and how successful it was at achieving it. Whether it was something worth achieving in the first place also enters into it as does the scope of its ambition. There are films I have given 3-4 stars to that I appreciate on a deeper level than some 5 star ones. I assume it is similar for most other people so I rarely pay attention to star ratings unless there are comments, or a full fledged review, behind it.