I realize that most folks don’t know the site actually does offer reviewers additional options — we don’t just have to pick “Fresh” or “Rotten,” we can also add star ratings or a point-ratings to each film, and the site provides that to users so you can look at more nuanced data for the film’s average scores and average star ratings.That’s why I’m less critical of the site itself per se and what it really tries to accomplish, and I’m far more critical of the way reviewers (sadly, particularly fan site bloggers who seem more inclined toward hyperbole and clickbait motivations) and users of the site that are increasingly making RT less helpful and less reliable.Some critics intentionally created “Fresh” or “Rotten” scores before even really seeing the film — most famously, a Top Critic on the site once bragged about adding a negative review/rating of a film just to anger fans of the director (Christopher Nolan) and to ruin the film’s perfect 100% rating at the time.I think the fix to this is relatively easy — RT should require reviewers to not just pick “Fresh” or “Rotten,” but to instead use a little sliding scale (literally, a horizontal line with a little tomato icon we can slide back and forth, left and right) where we move it into “Fresh” or “Rotten” territory and we control how far into either territory we set it.from reviewers, and would be the single metric for measuring “freshness” and “rottenness.” Then, for the overall score for the film, the site can show the final overall RT average percentage, with an image of the rotten or fresh tomato sitting on an image of a sliding scale (the tomato would be positioned above the average percentage number from all reviews).It’s a cool visual that quickly demonstrates both the final verdict (positive or negative) plus the degree of positivity or negativity (i.e. an equivalent “grade”).So that the Tomatometer has the icon image of "Fresh" or "Rotten" and the corresponding final percentage of reviewers who approve of the film, and directly below that would be the “Reviews Counted” and breakdown of number of fresh reviews and rotten reviews.Then, the “Average Rating” portion (currently sitting right below the icon and %) would be moved to the bottom (below the “Reviews Counted” breakdown), and instead of a set of numbers, the average rating would be demonstrated with a small sliding scale icon (like the one in my awful doodle above) where the little tomato image sitting above the average percentage rating by all reviewers.But I suspect people like the idea of a simple “do most people say it’s good” measurement instead of “how good do most people say it is” measurement.
You should ignore film ratings on IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes
Three hours later – unable to make a decision because of the conflicting information – you realise that it’s too late to start watching a film now anyway and settle down to watch old episodes of Parks and Rec.But why do the big film-ranking sites come up with such radically different options?In a roundabout way, these ratings are derived from votes submitted by IMDb users, not movie critics. .
Rotten Tomatoes, explained
People had been using Rotten Tomatoes to find movie reviews since it launched in 2000, but after Fandango acquired the site, it began posting “Tomatometer” scores next to movie ticket listings.It’s easy to see why anyone might assume that Rotten Tomatoes scores became more tightly linked to ticket sales, with potential audiences more likely to buy tickets for a movie with a higher score, and by extension, giving critics more power over the purchase of a ticket.And as most movie critics (including myself) will tell you, the correlation between Rotten Tomatoes scores, critical opinion, marketing tactics, and actual box office returns is complicated.The score that Rotten Tomatoes assigns to a film corresponds to the percentage of critics who’ve judged the film to be “fresh,” meaning their opinion of it is more positive than negative.The opinions of about 3,000 critics — a.k.a.As the reviews of a given film accumulate, the Rotten Tomatoes score measures the percentage that are more positive than negative, and assigns an overall fresh or rotten rating to the movie.Scores of over 60 percent are considered fresh, and scores of 59 percent and under are rotten.What does a Rotten Tomatoes score really mean?If I give a film a mixed review that’s generally positive (which, in Vox’s rating system, could range from a positive-skewing 3 to the rare totally enamored 5), that review receives the same weight as an all-out rave from another critic.So in many (if not most) cases, a film’s Rotten Tomatoes score may not correspond to any one critic’s view.Rotten Tomatoes also lets audiences rate movies, and the score is often out of step with the critical score.But with Rotten Tomatoes’ audience score, the situation is different.The audience score is also displayed on the Rotten Tomatoes page, but it’s not factored into the film’s fresh or rotten rating, and doesn’t contribute to a film being labeled as “certified fresh.”.The biggest reason many critics find Rotten Tomatoes frustrating is that most people’s opinions about movies can’t be boiled down to a simple thumbs up or down.Some critics use a four- or five-star rating, sometimes with half-stars included, to help quantify mixed opinions as mostly negative or mostly positive.The important point here is that no critic who takes their job seriously is going to have a simple yes-or-no system for most movies.The fear among many critics (including myself) is that people who rely largely on Rotten Tomatoes aren't interested in the nuances of a film, and aren't particularly interested in reading criticism, either.But maybe the bigger reason critics are worried about the influence of review aggregators is that they seem to imply there's a “right” way to evaluate a movie, based on most people's opinions.We worry that audience members who have different reactions will feel as if their opinion is somehow wrong, rather than seeing the diversity of opinions as an invitation to read and understand how and why people react to art differently.You’re buying movie tickets on Fandango, or you’re trying to figure out what to watch on Netflix, so you check the Rotten Tomatoes score to decide.Just because an individual's opinion is out of step with the Tomatometer doesn't mean the person is “wrong” — it just means they're an outlier.(For what it’s worth, another review aggregation site, Metacritic, maintains an even smaller and more exclusive group of critics than Rotten Tomatoes — its aggregated scores cap out around 50 reviews per movie, instead of the hundreds that can make up a Tomatometer score.But because the site’s ratings are even more carefully controlled to include only experienced professional critics — and because the reviews it aggregates are given a higher level of granularity, and presumably weighted by the perceived influence of the critic’s publication — most critics consider Metacritic a better gauge of critical opinion.).Does a movie’s Rotten Tomatoes score affect its box office earnings?The result, they hope, is increased interest and ticket sales when the movie opens in other cities.Yet when it comes to blockbusters, franchises, and other big studio films (which usually open in many cities at once), it’s much less clear how much a film’s Rotten Tomatoes score affects its box office tally.Still, studios certainly seem to believe the score makes a difference.Last summer, studios blamed Rotten Tomatoes scores (and by extension, critics) when poorly reviewed movies like Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Baywatch, and The Mummy performed below expectations at the box office.While it’s clear that a film’s Rotten Tomatoes score and box office earnings aren't correlated as strongly as movie studios might like you to think, blaming bad ticket sales on critics is low-hanging fruit.Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, co-star of Baywatch, certainly took that position when reviews of the 2017 bomb Baywatch came out:.The obvious rejoinder, at least from a critic’s point of view, is that if Baywatch was a better movie, there wouldn’t be such a disconnect.I and most other critics hoped the movie would be good, as is the case with all movies see.Late critics’ screenings for any given film mean that reviews of the film will necessarily come out very close to its release, and as a result, people purchasing advance tickets might buy them before there are any reviews or Tomatometer score to speak of.Thus, in spite of there being no strong correlation between negative reviews and a low box office, its first-weekend box returns might be less susceptible to any potential harm as a result of bad press.Studios do keep an eye on critics’ opinions, but they’re much more interested in ticket sales — which makes it easy to see why they don’t want risk having their opening weekend box office affected by bad reviews, whether there’s a proven correlation or not.The implication was that Fox believed the movie would be a critical success, and indeed, it was — the movie has a 97 percent Tomatometer score and an 86 percent audience score.And still, late press screenings fail to account for the fact that, while a low Rotten Tomatoes score doesn’t necessarily hurt a film’s total returns, aggregate review scores in general do have a distinct effect on second-weekend sales. .
Review aggregators are websites that collect film reviews and reflect overviews of critical reception by providing a score for a film based on the reviews.Some review aggregation websites, such as Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, are considered reliable sources, but information from them should be used in proper context and have some limitations.The "Top Critics" at Rotten Tomatoes and the critics at Metacritic are generally considered reliable and authoritative sources and are ideal for sampling.The "Top Critics" at Rotten Tomatoes and the critics at Metacritic are generally considered reliable and authoritative sources and are ideal for sampling.The site's critical consensus reads, "Though it begins with promise, Hancock suffers from a flimsy narrative and poor execution.".Such commentary should come before reporting aggregate scores because such sources are likely to be more authoritative and to provide descriptive prose.Such commentary should come before reporting aggregate scores because such sources are likely to be more authoritative and to provide descriptive prose.Since only a sample of reviews will be cited as references in a film's article, external links to Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic can be included to provide readers with access to additional reviews in centralized locations.Sources besides Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic should be sought out for films released before the 2000s; reports of critical consensus will likely exist in print sources.Sources besides Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic should be sought out for films released before the 2000s; reports of critical consensus will likely exist in print sources.Top Critics in Rotten Tomatoes: The "Top Critics" section on Rotten Tomatoes is a smaller sample size and may be statistically inaccurate.There exist websites (like Movie Review Query Engine) other than Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic that also aggregate film reviews and calculate scores based on them.However, Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic are the most well-established of such websites. .