As film critics seek to adapt to digital journalism, the venerable New York Film Critics Circle, founded in 1935, has partnered with 16-year-old review database Movie Review Query Engine (MRQE ("marquee") to relaunch their NYFCC website to lure moviegoers looking for guidance on what to see each weekend. The site will add members' reviews of new movies. “We’re expecting that the website will attract a diverse readership and broaden the already considerable influence of the group," said John Anderson, the current NYFCC chair.
While the NYFCC is hugely influential via its year-end film awards, this digital move to reach out to film buffs may be too little too late. Anyone can already check out a wider selection of top national reviewers at Rotten Tomatoes' Cream of the Crop, Metacritic or check RT-owner Flixster recommendations on their smart phones. The Broadcast Film Critics Association (of which I am a member) also does a decent job of tracking new movie reviews from its members. And indieWIRE has its own criticWIRE. In other words, many critic aggregators have already established their places in this niche.
The new design of the NYFFC site includes:
the most up to date film reviews from NYFCC members, a current twitter feed to follow members, and relevant and timely film features, as well as social media integration, a blog and connection to MRQE.com. The site will continue to include information about the New York Film Critics Circle, its members and its awards. In addition to becoming a continually updated site for viewers to use as a film-going tool on a regular basis, the new website features more user interactivity as compared to the old site and the new blog section features articles and commentary from NYFCC members. Users can also choose to follow the Twitter streams of Circle members, and connect with NYFCC’s Facebook page.
So far member tweets are dominated by Us Weekly's Thelma Adams and The New York Post's Lou Lumenick.