Hello, and welcome to my review blog! My name is Sean Farley, AKA “Startled Sloth,” a Writing Arts graduate of Rowan University, writer for Berjé Inc, and general lover of all things creative. I mostly review movies on here, though sometimes I’ll provide my opinions on other mediums of entertainment like television, video games, and whatever else I feel like talking about. As someone who writes for a living and studied writing at school, I tend to focus on plot/story aspects such as narrative structure, character development, and pacing, though I do have a fair amount of knowledge and appreciation for the technical aspects of filmmaking and game design too.
My scoring system is a little different than the standard “grading” methods of other sites, as I view 5/10 as average, with anything above that being a net positive and anything below that being a net negative. Review scores are generally a pretty bad tool for reflecting the actual quality of a product, but I understand they’re useful as a means for people to quickly gauge whether or not they’d be interested in spending their hard-earned cash on something. In order to better understand how my scores reflect my actual opinion on things, check out the chart below:
- 🤬 1/10 – Unwatchable/Unplayable: A piece of media with little to no redeeming qualities whatsoever. I cannot recommend anyone spend their money on this, and I have no idea why it was even made in the first place. Avoid at all costs, there is nothing of value here. Not even “so bad it’s good,” just plain awful. If something gets this rating, it has probably left me feeling insulted on a personal level.
- 😡 2/10 – Terrible: Something that’s not a complete failure but pretty damn close to it. I had little to no joy experiencing it and while there might be one or two aspects I can appreciate, it’s probably not worth the time and effort to get there. Unless you’re part of an extremely specific audience, you likely won’t find anything worthwhile here either.
- 😠 3/10 – Bad: Pretty much the default rating for anything that makes me go “well that was stupid.” There might be a few good moments sprinkled throughout a bad movie or game but it’s weighed down too heavily by all the negative aspects for it to really matter. Might be worth checking out if the things I mention in the review don’t seem to bother you too much.
- 😒 4/10 – Mediocre: Not bad but not especially good either, usually bogged down by a few annoying aspects or frustrating choices that hold it back from maintaining an average rating. Mediocre movies and games can be especially annoying because they were so close to something good but either squandered their potential or messed up an aspect of their product so badly that I can’t recommend it in good faith. Possibly worth a single watch or playthrough, but almost definitely not worth doing more than once.
- 😐 5/10 – Average: The middle of the road upon which most things land, average movies and games don’t leave me feeling like I’ve wasted my money but they didn’t especially impress me either. They have their hits and misses but are generally inoffensive and don’t leave me feeling frustrated or angry. Worth an initial watch/play or two, but nothing really beyond that.
- 🙂 6/10 – Above Average: A step above average, this is when things start genuinely impressing me. Above average games and movies are worth your time and will likely have a few surprises along the way, making them worth a 2nd or even 3rd watch or playthrough. However, something is still holding them back from being anything remarkable, and they probably have a few aspects I wasn’t particularly fond of, preventing them from moving any higher.
- 😀 7/10 – Good: A piece of media that I genuinely liked all the way through and would recommend to most people, good movies and games are worth your time and money, and will almost certainly engage you in some way. This is usually the score I attribute to things I had a lot of fun watching or playing, even if they have their flaws. A solid score for an entertaining piece of media, if you don’t have a lot of time to mess around with middling products, you should probably check out whatever gets this rating or higher.
- 😄 8/10 – Great: Something that I enjoyed a whole lot and will definitely be coming back to rewatch or replay soon. Great movies and games definitely deserve your attention and are pieces of media that I would recommend to pretty much everyone. They are really entertaining and will probably leave you wanting more after the credits start rolling (in a good way). While they might not be as engaging or thought-provoking as other movies or games, they’ll still leave you satisfied with your purchase and give you a lot to talk about afterwards.
- 😁 9/10 – Fantastic: Absolutely excellent in almost every aspect of its production, these pieces of media obviously come from a place of passion and are either deeply inspiring, supremely entertaining, or both. Just shy from becoming a masterpiece, these movies and games are still worth every second of your time and will definitely continue to resonate with you long after the experience has ended.
- 🤩 10/10 – Masterpiece: Drop what you’re doing right now and go watch or play this instead. Seriously. Completely unskippable and absolutely legendary, these movies and games will have you talking about them for years after they’ve been released, and for good reason too. As close to perfection as you can possibly get, these are the things that inspire me to get out of bed in the morning, and reaffirm to me why creativity is such an important aspect of human culture. But really though, why are you still reading this? Go out and absorb this stuff right now!
Anyway, I hope that gives you a better idea of how my scores reflect my actual thoughts on things. Just a reminder that everything in this blog is my own opinion and if it doesn’t line up with yours, that’s totally fine! We all connect to stuff in different ways and if everyone had the same thoughts about everything, we wouldn’t have so many wonderful genres and mediums to explore! If you’ve come this far, thanks for being so interested in my website! As a reward, have a picture of a sloth taking the day off. Cheers!