Amber Amber

Movie Reviews Writing and Functional Language Lesson
Intermediate level


In this lesson, Ss will learn about movie reviews through an example of a review of the popular American crime film The Godfather. After learning the functional language necessary to read, write, or discuss the components of a movie review, Ss will practice writing reviews of their favorite movies. They will share these movie reviews with one another, and perhaps present some of them to the WC if there is enough time.


Abc Functional Language Presentation
Abc Paragraph Ordering HO (adapted from English File Intermediate SB)
Abc The Godfather Film Review Cut-Outs (from English File Intermediate SB)

Main Aims

  • To practice writing movie reviews

Subsidiary Aims

  • To learn the functional language necessary to read, write, and discuss movie reviews


Lead-in: The Godfather Trailer (5 minutes) • To remind the Ss of the lesson focus after the break, and provide a stimulating beginning

Ss come back from a break from class, and watch the trailer for The Godfather, a movie they recently read a review on. This is intended to provide a visual and auditory illustration for the review they recently read and discussed. Though not included in the SB, T elicits and teaches the word 'trailer'. T asks the Ss to discuss if they like the trailer, if they've seen the movie, and if they like the movie in pairs. T asks some pairs to share.

Exercise B: Ordering Paragraphs (10 minutes) • To show Ss an example of how one may organize a movie review

T will show Ss the movie review cut into four pieces around the classroom. T will ask Ss to walk around reading the parts of the review and writing their order. First, T will use ICQs and CCQs to check understanding (especially of information from the previous lesson). Then, T will ask Ss to return to their seats and check in pairs. After checking in pairs, T will call on Ss to state the order, and perhaps more information.

Exercise C: Present Tense for Movie Reviews (5 minutes) • To highlight the fact that we use the present tense when writing movie reviews

T asks Ss to look at the third paragraph of their film review (which isn't included in the Materials since it'll be given to them by the previous teacher) and state which tense it is in. T asks the Ss why they think this is true. Upon hearing some thoughts, the T explains this, and later prompts them to use the present tense when writing their own movie reviews.

Functional Language: Describing a Film (12-15 minutes) • To provide Ss with the functional language they need to understand and write movie reviews

T elicits and introduces chosen functional language through a presentation. T uses The Titanic as an example of another classic American movie (of another genre) to teach these piece of language. If the computer has problems, T writes on the WB instead. T marks any stress and phonological elements also. After learning a piece of language, T asks Ss to find the answer in The Godfather review, and tell the person next to them.

Writing: Movie Reviews and Feedback (12-15 minutes) • To give Ss time to practice writing their own movie reviews

T passes out a HO with the functional language, and tells the Ss they can use this as a guide if they desire. They can write the pieces of info they want on the HO first, and then write their paragraph if need be. T prompts Ss to write a paragraph (or multiple) to review any movie of their choice. Ss will have seven minutes, and can look up information on Google if need be. When done, T asks the Ss to exchange reviews with the person next to them, and discuss. If there's extra time, T will either ask the Ss to stand up and mingle, discussing their movie reviews, or for some Ss to volunteer reading their reviews in front of the class and having Ss ask them questions.

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