About Otter and Ratings

Movies aren’t life, but they’re a good substitute…Otter

Otter’s Eclectic Movie Reviews

I started reviewing movies in January, 2002**. I review every movie that I watch, whether it’s in a movie theater or on a tv or computer, and whether or not I’ve seen it before. Since all of these things make a difference in how I perceive the movie I’m watching, my ratings will tell you this and more. I average 2-3 movies a week, and usually post my new reviews once a month or so.

Also, I don’t use any real names in these reviews; I’m Otter, my excellent hubs is Mr. Otter. If I know you and watch movies with you, you will receive an epithet…which I hope you’ll like, because that’s how I’ll refer to you every time we watch a movie together and I write a review. Just sayin’ that you might want to be a little more choosy who you watch movies with…

What’s Otter’s Rating System?

Otters have a rather eclectic system of rating movies; the categories I use on this site are as follows:

watched at home 
watched on laptop  
watched in theater

lets you know if I saw it at home on my tv set, or in a movie theatre, or on my laptop. Makes a difference with some movies.


Deja VIEW  

I’m reviewing a movie I’ve seen before and just rewatched.



Explosions, car chases, gunshots, my favorite part of any movie. Ranging from not-so-good to good to excellent.



Ranges from not-so-good to good to excellent. You do need to realize that this is not usually the first factor that draws me into the theater (see ‘explodo’, above…)



I don’t usually see movies for this factor alone, but otters are suckers for a good love story. If it’s excellent, bring the kleenex, not-so-good, forget about it.



A lot of the movies I watch have these; if they’re nothing out of the ordinary, I won’t mention them; otherwise, they range from not-so-good to good to excellent.


Reality Police
Physics Police

If these guys show up, the movie is in a lot of trouble. I only call them in when I need them, for really really boneheaded mistakes…like that scene in Star Trek Generations, where there was a hole in a wall leaking air into space, you could see the stars through it, and characters were standing around talking without even getting their hair mussed…


Oogie factor

This is so embarrassing to admit…Otter loves horror novels, and has read many, both good and bad, and never lost a moment of sleep…but I CANNOT go see scary movies. If you see this category show up, you’ll know there’s something in it that scared me.    More on oogies


Historical nobrainer

This is one of my favorite descriptions of movies:

  1. Open the top of my skull with one hand
  2. Remove my brain with the other
  3. Close the top of my skull again while carefully holding the brain in my other hand
  4. Showing brain: “See this? This is the part of my brain that knows stuff about history!”
  5. Toss brain behind me over shoulder
  6. “Gee! That was a GREAT MOVIE!!!”

This does not show up for musicals or things like that, only for ‘historical epics’ and the like. And only if I otherwise like the movie am I willing to toss my brain to watch it…



This is a scale from (usually) 1 to 9, reflecting how much money I would have been willing to pay to see it had I known ahead of time how much I would like it. Oh, and you need to know that in my head, movies are still 7-8 dollars, so a 9 or a 10 is VERY GOOD INDEED.



ottersmile – Really really liked it, made me smile.
otterLOL – It actually made me laugh out loud.
ottermeh – No strong feelings. This is not a good thing.
ottermad – I paid nine bucks for THIS???


An Otter Family Fav!                      

We love this movie and happily watch it over and over and over and over. Mr. Otter has to agree to this for it to be considered a fav, and he’s a toughie.


If you see this icon in a review, I saw it in blu-ray and will probably have a comment about how good the conversion was, and if it’s worth buying it again in the new format. Not everything is…

*(more on oogies)

…Now we’re not just talking scared, we’re talking I’m-leaving-the-lights-on-til-dawn-and-never-sleeping-again-heart-pounding-terrified here. The funny thing is, it’s not violence that bothers me- I can happily sit through any amount of blood, gore, flying body parts and general mayhem and not bat an eye- but THINGS COMING BACK FROM THE DEAD, no way charlie!

Amusing stuff like Ghostbusters, Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness were ok, but Sixth Sense was about at the limit of my oogie factor.

When I saw American Werewolf in London (“It’s not scary! It’s funny!“, said my friend Craig…), I didn’t sleep for THREE STRAIGHT NIGHTS. And it was WEEKS before I could look in a mirror without expecting to see Jack looking over my shoulder…and I don’t mean my cat! You don’t even want to know how I reacted to The Exorcist…and one of the worst birthdays of my life was the one where everyone in my family, including Mr. Otter, decided that they wanted to watch Poltergeist that night!

So although the oogie factor is quite important to me, you may want to disregard it…saying that a movie scared me is kinda like saying that water is wet…

**Just like everyone else in the world, my life changed drastically in March of 2020 when the pandemic went into overdrive. One of the side effects was that even though I kept watching movies (and watched more, actually, because what else was there to do?) I stopped reviewing them…for two years. I kept a list of what I saw, and now that life has gone back to something approximating normal, I’m reviewing them, in chronological order of when I watched them…but it’s going to take me a while to catch up, so please be patient.

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