Guest Writercize - Nicole, Madlab Post (Movie Review)

Today I welcome Nicole to the writercize guest spot. I met Nicole through the A to Z Challenge this past April, and instantly felt a connection to her through her thoughtful comments and supportive attitude. She runs a blog called The Madlab Post which reviews, evaluates, compares, questions, and more ... anything to do with cinema, from the perspective of an aspiring film maker and writer. Her irreverent style mixed with intelligent commentary is always a pleasure to read, and the questions she poses to her readers are always interesting.

Without further ado, I present to you: Nicole!  (Oh, and PS - you might want to leave a couple of candles and a slice of cake with your comment.  Just saying, today might be a special day for a certain someone.)  

The end of this post does reference sexual content in a movie, so be aware.

Greetings to all Writercize readers on this most glorious day. What makes it so glorious, you ask? Well, because we’re going to have some fun writing movie reviews. Here is a short primer for those of you who are unfamiliar with me and/or my writing: My name is Nicole; I blog about independent films, hot actors, prolific movie directors and Hollywood releases as well as party ideas that help mix cinema into the equation in almost any social gathering, at my blog, The Madlab Post. I am also a filmmaker who has made several short films and plans to bring one of my feature length screenplays to the big (or small) screen.

After reading movie reviews in newspapers, magazines and online, I leave the text feeling like I should have just watched the entire film instead of spending 15-30 minutes reading someone’s critique of the piece. Now, I don’t mind a good review that just happens to be lengthy, but have found many movie reviews to be obnoxiously lengthy for no reason. It usually occurs when the reviewer carefully dissects almost every aspect of a particular film, when some of the readers probably aren’t interested in knowing about all of this information in the first place. This is why I started writing an “In a Nutshell” series on my blog featuring short movie reviews that are often 140 words or less; well, THAT and I wanted to try writing shorter posts more often since mine tend to be on the long-winded side.

Movie reviews are the focus of today’s writercize. It is inspired by my “In a Nutshell” series, which was inspired by the word count limit that Twitter has setup for its users. 

writercize:  In 140 words or less, write a movie review on any one film that you have already seen.

Within the last two weeks or so, I’ve watched several movies including “Shortbus,” “Hostel,” “1408,” “Finding Forrester” and “Funny Games” and since either already used or plan on using most of these films for other online writing duties of mine, here is my review of the movie “Shortbus,” a title that ironically fits in line with the theme of this writercize:

(Nicole's sample writercize response below:)

I thought that this movie was about orgies, shot cinéma vérité style. While watching it, I learned that this was not a movie about orgies. It is a movie about a sexually frustrated “couples counselor” who cannot orgasm, her gay clients who add a third person into their depressing relationship in hopes of fixing problems that they have difficulties addressing, a dominatrix whose job stifles the confidence for pursuing her passions in art photography that she does on the side -- and a singing mistress of ceremonies who spends half of his time “blowing the NYPD” to provide a place for them all to congregate in a brooklyn salon that offers entertainment in a variety of fashions including discussion groups, live art, music, drinks and all of the free heterosexual and LGBT sex that you desire -- with real, full-frontal penetration.

Word count total for my “Shortbus” movie review: 139 words


Now, it’s your turn!


  1. Thanks for the great writercize Nicole! I was away over the weekend, but plan to tackle this ASAP. We've been stuck on TV lately in my house, so I have to bring a movie fresh to mind for the review. It shall be done. ;)

  2. Finally inspired!

    Like Stars on Earth (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0986264/)
    Director: Aamir Khan
    Hindi language film, subtitled

    Like Stars on Earth paints a poignant portrait of a young boy with academic troubles who tries but can’t succeed at school and turns to acting out to avoid feeling disappointed in himself. Viewers understand immediately the boy is dyslexic, but his teachers and parents do not, and the further they push him the more desperate the boy becomes. Finally one special art teacher understands the problem and advocates on the boy’s behalf.

    Darsheel Safary offers a heartwarming performance as young Ishaan while Indian great Aamir Khan brings charm and compassion to his portrayal of Ram Shankar Nikumbh, the art teacher. The viewer will have a deeper understanding of what dyslexia feels like for all children affected, and see clues on how to work through dyslexia. Moments of classic Bollywood song and dance make the film a joy to watch!

    (review: 140 words)

    (would have liked to add: Confusing at times, the film purposely makes the viewer lose a sense of time to get into the mind of the boy.)

  3. Alana,

    Thanks for trying this writercize on for size. I especially like your addition of a foreign film into the mix. I haven't watched many (if any, at all) Bollywood films but based on your review, I plan on queue-ing it up on Netflix, if it is available there. My knowledge of dyslexia is pretty much non-existent, so this films sounds like I could learn a thing or two about the condition, from watching the movie.

    I also like what seems like an underlying lesson in patience, understanding and good teachers who put real effort in improving the lives, development and academic performance of their students. We need more teachers like this, especially because educators can sometimes be the only source of quality guidance that some children who have parents who are not as involved in their lives, are able to receive.

    Nice review :)

    After "Shutter Island," I have been weary of confusing films but if it takes the viewer away for a specific and understanding purpose relating to the story, I can dig it!

    By the way, did you check out Smurfdok's(sdk_2010) 140 word "Twilight: Breaking Dawn" movie review?

    I bet it will make you laugh, especially if you were thinking, but never said out loud, some of what he highlights regarding the movie.

    The Madlab Post

  4. Hey Nicole,

    I did check out Smurfdok's post - funny!

    You'll have to let me know what you think of Like Stars on Earth - Bollywood movies tend to run pretty long and include a little of everything - romance, drama, moral lessons, song, dance. I'm generally amused.

    If you end up liking the movie, the main actor (Aamir Khan, who I think is totally adorable) is in another one that is enjoyable along similar lines (story about educational failures and successes) called Three Idiots. Slightly different level and concept, but similar humor and irreverence.


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