Dragon Films

Dragon Films Rubric Dragon Films Rubric

Dragon Films rates every movie it recieves before it is officially posted on Dragon Films. This rating system is used to give visitors an idea of the quality of a movie before they download it. It also allows visitors to find movies that they enjoy faster. There are two types of ratings on Dragon Films: the four-category "Old Rating System" and the six-category "Rubric System". The Old System began back when Dragon Films opened in 1998 and is a very basic (but effective) way for people to find movies to their interests. In this system there are four categories: Storyline, Smoothness, Construction, and Creativity. These categories are rated using stars, with one star being the lowest rating and five stars the highest. Here's a breakdown of what these categories mean:

Old Rating System
Storyline: Even the coolest-looking movie is meaningless if it is not complimented by a strong storyline, which is the backbone to any good movie. Storyline gauges how well-planned a movie's story is. Strong storylines are complex, absorbing, and give the movie its real shine; weak storylines are pointless, boring, and do not leave any sort of impression on the viewer after the movie is over.

Smoothness: Continuity in a movie is essential if the viewer is to make any sense of it. Smoothness measures how well story, actors, and scenes mesh together to make one movie. It also reflects the choice of scene transitions and storyline jumps. Smooth movies include logical transitions from one storyline point to the next and keep the viewer involved in the movie; movies lacking in this category sporadically jump from storyline point to storyline point, are tough to follow logically, and generally are annoying to watch.

Construction: Any story can be told with words, but it takes skill to convert it into a 3DMM movie. Construction measures how good the movie looks in 3DMM. Well-constructed movies have great scenes, good audio choice and placement, and look like they took more than three minutes to put together; poorly-constructed movies show little coherence between the many aspects that make up a movie and little evidence of effort.

Creativity: Who wants to see the same story played out over and over? Creativity, as its name implies, gauges how unique a movie is. It is not only storyline that can be unique; any aspect of the movie that stands out as new and original can give a movie a good Creativity score. Unique movies have these new, innovative techniques; movies lacking in creativity are dull and show little originality.

The other system of rating movies, the "Rubric System", is much more in-depth and comprehensive. In the past, this rubric was only used on movies that directors requested it to be on. Now, it is used to critique movies that I either immensely enjoyed or feel require a more detailed review to get my views on it across. The rubric follows a strict grading system with six categories: Storyline, Creativity, Construction, Visual Appearance, Audio, and Fun to Watch. Each is explained in greater detail below with the criteria for each star value:

Rubric System
Storyline: The Storyline of the film is one of the most important parts. Without a good storyline and plot, the film becomes like a person without a skeleton: it is technically possible to survive, but only if it has a lot of support from the rest of its body. A good plot contains many characters that have great interactions, many unique twists and turns, and a compelling motive. Storyline development is also very important, for a great plot idea will go nowhere if it isn't given the chance to evolve. A good rating for this requires a storyline that is not only interesting, but develops nicely and is well thought-out.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie has a nonexistent or very weak storyline. There is little to no development of the plot, characters, and conflict. The story idea itself is also boring and not very unique.
** - The movie has a storyline, although it's pretty weak and somewhat boring. There are many flaws in the development in key points of the story, but the idea of it is somewhat original.
*** - The movie has an average storyline, and the plot idea is original and unique. The plot flows and evolves well, and is obviously at least remotely important to the overall movie.
**** - The movie has a well-developed storyline, and it flows very well along with the characters, setting, and theme of the film. Its idea is well planned and original, rather complex, and contains many key points that are crucial to the story.
***** - The movie has an amazingly well-thought out and developed plotline that is extremely well concieved and put together. Key points in the film are very complex and have a great impact on the story, which itself is fun to watch and contains many great characters and ideas. These stories are ones that will be remembered for quite a while.

Creativity: Creativity is another great key factor for an awesome movie. A movie that is creative and original will provoke more thought from the viewer and make them want to watch it time and again. Films that go after unique ideas that are rarely acknowledged will gain lots of viewers and a good star rating in this category. Films that tend to look like another existing film or come off of an existing idea will get low stars for this, unless the use of creative props and other aspects make up for it.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie shows little to no creativity at all. It's either copied from another movie or idea or just based on a very simple and boring idea.
** - The movie has a weak central theme and idea, but a few creative things were implemented in the film. Relation to the central theme, though, was limited.
*** - The movie shows an average amount of creativity and obviously had some thought put into its development.
**** - The movie contains several neat and unique ideas which are presented nicely and go together well. The central theme is one which sounds, looks, and is quite interesting. Other aspects of the movie, such as scene construction, character interaction, and even sound usage are original as well.
***** - The movie was chock-full of many incredible ideas, such as a marvelous storyline, an awesome character interaction, and great camera angle ideas. Complexity of the individual movie aspects is quite apparent here.

Construction: Movie construction is the third vital part of a good film. A movie with good construction contains a lot of original scenery, demonstrates good actions of the characters, uses appropriate sounds at the appropriate times, and boasts an overall look of a high-quality movie. Basically, the time spent making the movie and assuring that it is as flawless as possible directly relates to the Construction score.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie contains no original scenes, props, movements, sounds, and is put together quite poorly. The camera angles make it hard to see the crucial points of the film and many of the sounds and characters have no relevance to what's going on at all.
** - The movie has a few scattered custom scenes and props, and a few good character relations and sounds can be noticed. Although they are there, their relevance to the main plot is limited and obviously not a priority to the director.
*** - The movie is average, containing a mediocre amount of sounds, custom scenes, unique props, and so on. The film itself has the look of one that took more than a few days to whip up.
**** - The movie is much more than a belch of moviemaking; it it put together well enough to be considered more than a spur-of-the-moment idea, but it is not quite perfect.
***** - The movie obviously took the director a long time to make, as it demonstrates a superior combination and quality of moviemaking aspects. Scenes are constructed well, the action corresponds well with the central theme and plot, and overall the movie has an obvious "high-quality" feel to it.

Visual Appearance: Visual Appearance is not necessarily a crucial part to a film, however no visual appeal will destroy a movie, no matter how great the story, audio, or creativity are. A film that looks great will no doubt draw more viewers to it, as opposed to one that looks really junky and almost sickening to watch. Stars are gained here through the use of complex special effects, detailed scenery, or whatever else that happens to look cool on the screen.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie contains no special effects or neat camera angles. The movie has an ambient trashy look, and looks like the director whipped it up in 5 minutes.
** - The movie has some neat-looking scenes, camera angles, and special effects, although they are presented in a low-quality style.
*** - The movie demonstrates an average command of using 3DMM to create good visual effects, but does not necessarily use these techniques throughout the whole movie.
**** - The movie contains quite a few images and animations that are quite detailed, creative, and well-made. Special effects abound.
***** - The movie shows that the director has a superb command of 3DMM visual effects techniques, which are demonstrated throughout the length of the film.

Audio: Like Visual Appearance, a great Audio rating isn't required for a great movie. A film can have little to no sound at all but can have a superb story, or can be the other way around, having great sounds but no plot. And like Visual Appearance, good audio tends to attract more viewers than films without good audio. Stars are awarded here based on the amount and quality of the film's original audio and usage.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie has no or very few original audio clips, and the usage of the ones that it does have is terrible.
** - The movie contains a limited amount of original sounds, although the usage of them is pretty good.
*** - The movie has a moderate amount of original sounds which are used nicely in conjunction with premade sounds and with the film's plotline.
**** - The movie contains a nice collection of original audio clips which are used very well in accordance to the individual scenes and the story. A neat soundtrack is also prominent.
***** - The movie has multitudes of original sounds, midis, and voices, that are all used very well, sound fantastic, and add a very nice cinematic touch to the film.

Fun to Watch: The Fun to Watch category is one of the most important of them all... a high rating here denotes a movie that is well worth watching. Movies that are fun to watch are ones that aren't all talking, aren't all special effects, aren't all nonstop action, but are films that have a good blend of all such movie aspects, making it fun and interesting to watch. A movie that recieves a high rating here is one that is fun to watch and can be watched time and again with the same enjoyment. Final thoughts about the movie are also described here.
Rubric criteria:
* - The movie is incredibly dull with an extreme overkill of one type of movie aspect, such as fighting, talking, or walking. The film is more of a chore to watch than a means of entertainment.
** - The movie is sort of boring, with no replay value whatsoever. It is about as fun as watching somebody sleep.
*** - The movie is alright to watch and is somewhat interesting and fun, although it wouldn't be worth it to watch it again.
**** - The movie is fun to watch and is nice and thought-provoking. It has a replay value of about two or three more watches.
***** - The movie is very entertaining, thought-provoking, and will leave you with something to take back to life with you. It is definitely one you should get your hands on as soon as possible and keep for a long time.

In addition to in-depth reviews, Dragon Films also puts a content rating on movies reviewed with the Dragon Films Rubric for everyone's convenience. The ratings, which go from G to R, are described in more detail below:

Content Ratings
G - A G rating denotes a movie that is appropriate for anybody at any age. These movies contain little to no violence, profanity, blood, or any other questionable content for that matter.

PG - A PG rating denotes a movie that contains some realistic violence, blood, or language. These movies are not recommended for kids under the age of 7. Comedy films generally fall into this category.

PG-13 - A PG-13 rating denotes a movie that is suited for viewers over the age of 12 or 13. These movies generally have some combination of profane language, realistic violence, blood, and other questionable content. Many Fantasy/Sci-Fi and Action/Drama movies fall under this category.

R - An R rating denotes a movie that has a considerable amount of questionable material, language, blood, and very realistic violence and may not be suitable for viewers under 15. These movies tend to be the blood-ridden Action or Horror flicks.

Finally, since Dragon Films has been up and rating movies for so long, it has been through many evolutions of 3DMM skill and technique. This means, for example, an older movie, which was the best of its kind two years ago, may not look that great by today's standards but still have a perfect rating on Dragon Films. All ratings are relative to the current time's standard of 3DMM ability. So if you don't agree that some really old movie deserves a 30/30 rating, remember that the rating was given back when that movie really was the best of the best. You can tell that a movie graded on the Rubric is "old" if you do not see a "review date" at the bottom of the page and the review sounds very general and is rather short (which was how I reviewed back in those days); my more recent reviews are much more specific and a lot longer, encompassing a lot more important details that reviewing movies is all about. Likewise, if you think a new movie's rating is ridiculously low, then observe some of the more recent movies that have obtained decent scores to see what the expected "standard" level is. While this is somewhat unfair to new directors who have never used 3DMM before, I feel it is actually a way to help them build the skills they need to make quality movies faster.

Now, with the knowledge of how Dragon Films rates movies, head on over to the Theaters and watch some!


Dragon Films 1998-2006 Greg Strnad. All rights reversed. 
Dragon Films