In these days of instant information via texting and postings, print reviews matter less than they used to. Newspaper circulation is down, and by the time a magazine comes out, everyone pretty much knows whether or not they plan to see the movie. Are they irrelevant? No. A great review in a major paper can help focus attention on a small film. By revealing a bit about the plot, the genre, and the cast, a reviewer gives the wavering reader a little insight and can help propel him or her to get in the car or walk downtown and spend money on this film rather than another.
Raves can attract an unexpected audience by hitting a broad demographic. A series of great reviews can be a boon to filmmakers who can’t afford to ...