Not every movie can be a slam dunk, and not every movie is enjoyed by everyone.  Most of us have seen our fair share of clunkers over the years, and we all have that one film that we dislike so much that hearing its name makes you recoil in horror and disgust.

Well, get out the crucifix and holy water because this series of prompts is related to that movie!

Pick your least favorite movie – or just one you can’t stand – and watch it again.  You can do it; I believe in you.  Then, take some time to write about it using the following prompts.  Like the prompts for your favorite movie, write at least 500 words for each exercise.

Deep breath.  Exhale.  Let’s begin.

#1 – Why Is It Bad?

Lay it out on the page.  List and discuss everything about this movie that you despise, dislike, hate, can’t stand, and make it unwatchable in your opinion.  Be as negative and pessimistic as you wish, making this a free therapy session where you rant about this insult to filmmaking.  

#2 – What Did You Like?

Is there anything in the movie that is salvageable?  Anything, even one thing, that you can pick out of its runtime that you liked even just a little bit?  Avoid writing things like “Nothing” or “Hated 100% of it.”  

Find that thin silver lining, even if you have to squint and try really hard to find it.

#3 – What Would You Change to Make It Better?

If given the script, what would you change to improve it?  How would you as a writer make the story, character, dialogue better and more palatable?  Write about what would have to be done to the film to make it more appealing to you as a viewer.

#4 – The Movie-Watching Experience

Write about your first time seeing the movie.  Were you excited to see it?  At what point during the movie did you realize you were in for a really bad time?  What thoughts went through your head?  Did you want to get up and leave?  Did the film haunt you long after it ended?  

#5 – Find a Positive Review

RottenTomatoes.com makes this easier than ever.  Go on the site and find a positive review of the movie.  Read the full review, then write a response to the review, either agreeing with their points or arguing against them.  

If this is one of those infamous 0% movies, try to find a positive audience review on imdb.com or Letterboxd.com.  

Loving or hating a movie is a matter of opinion.  It’s as subjective as liking or disliking a piece of art, a book, or a play.  How we respond to a particular film, positively or negatively, can come from various factors.  

Examining those factors can help us as writers and other creative types understand why we gravitate toward some things and are repelled by others.  Is it nature or nurture that makes us love or hate a film?  

Happy Writing, and I’ll see you next time!

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