Roger Ebert 1942-2013

Discuss films and filmmakers of the 20th century (and even a little of the 19th century). Threads may contain spoilers.
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david hare
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#26 Post by david hare » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:27 pm

There is a terrific piece by Robert Garrick at Dave Kehr's blog today, probably the best imaginable obit. Robert is obviously closer to the heart of the "Chicago School" than probably anyone here, and it really shows in the degree of affection. What is so consistent and so impressive is Ebert's sheer catholicity of taste, and not only in films but in the range of journals and media for which he wrote or appeared. He understood something as amorphous and crude as the "American Public" and managed to present astute (generally) film appreication and criticism that could only point the great unwashed in the right direction.

He was definitely one of the good guys. Not just another motherfucker like Wells or Armond White. Or the whores at the New Yorker. And worse.

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lacritfan
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#27 Post by lacritfan » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:34 pm


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vsski
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#28 Post by vsski » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:52 pm

Very sad indeed. I have seen and met Mr. Ebert during several Sundance Film Festivals and it was always startling for me to see that while he commanded a lot of respect (and glances and side conversations when he entered a screening), he seemed always uncomfortable being thrust into the spotlight and usually avoided the attention by leaving the impression of a "Do not approach" look. While others appeared to be primarly going to Sundance to circulate the parties and to be seen, Mr. Ebert was attending every movie screening possible. And when you did get to talk to him, his passion and incredible knowledge of the movie and cast and crew at hand and movies in general was undeniable.
He will be sorely missed!

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Drucker
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#29 Post by Drucker » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:04 pm


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knives
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#30 Post by knives » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:10 pm

Doesn't feature his bit on Gamera so it's incomplete. I'd show it, but there doesn't seem to be a single clip available.

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Markson
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#31 Post by Markson » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:43 pm


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RagingNoodles
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#32 Post by RagingNoodles » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:52 pm

Did anyone here listen to Jonathan Rosenbaum talk about Ebert's passing on WBEZ?

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warren oates
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#33 Post by warren oates » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:01 pm

Can't find that on the site, but here's audio from the same station of Werner Herzog who seems pretty broken up and unusually at a loss for words.

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dx23
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#34 Post by dx23 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:10 pm

One of my favorite episodes of The Critic was with Siskel and Ebert. I loved that both of them had an incredible sense of humor and truly loved their jobs.


rs98762001
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#36 Post by rs98762001 » Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:19 am

Fittingly, considering how much he adored The Tree of Life, the last review Ebert filed was for To The Wonder.

stwrt
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#37 Post by stwrt » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:48 am

His recent auto-biography got a slagging in the Sight & Sound, not there's anything wrong with that, though they'll probably hope readers forget that when they print a note about his passing.

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scotty2
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#38 Post by scotty2 » Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:03 am

Kane remained his favorite. I had a little blog post on Borges and Welles waiting when I heard the news and dedicated it to Ebert.

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Caligula
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#39 Post by Caligula » Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:38 am

Ever since I discovered his reviews on the old MS Cinemania he was the one person who really opened my mind and changed the way I approached film. His Great Movies essays (first online, then the books) have always been like a point of departure for me, whether to explore new horizons or to check back once I'd seen something that he'd written on.

I've also spent significant time reading his blog postings on a wide variety of subjects, going through his hated films' reviews for the witty putdowns, and using his reviews in general as a starter point to decide whether it was worth my while to see a film or not. And yes, though I found myself in disagreement with him at times, his opinion will be sorely missed.

A giant has fallen.

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MichaelB
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#40 Post by MichaelB » Fri Apr 05, 2013 4:45 am

stwrt wrote:His recent auto-biography got a slagging in the Sight & Sound, not there's anything wrong with that, though they'll probably hope readers forget that when they print a note about his passing.
Ebert would have known better than anyone that a single contributor's opinion ≠ the magazine's editorial position as a whole.

stwrt
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#41 Post by stwrt » Fri Apr 05, 2013 7:05 am

MichaelB wrote:
stwrt wrote:His recent auto-biography got a slagging in the Sight & Sound, not there's anything wrong with that, though they'll probably hope readers forget that when they print a note about his passing.
Ebert would have known better than anyone that a single contributor's opinion ≠ the magazine's editorial position as a whole.
Yes and I'm sure Mr Ebert would say it's a big enough magazine to do that (and one which I notice is getting a lot better).

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who is bobby dylan
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#42 Post by who is bobby dylan » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:18 pm

Rosenbaum interview on WBEZ.


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HistoryProf
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#44 Post by HistoryProf » Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:29 am

Roger's passing really hit me hard. A kid growing up in Northern Michigan in the 70s and 80s didn't have much exposure to movies - we only had a single screen old movie house (it was split for two in 1983), but my folks made sure we watched Siskel and Ebert every weekend on PBS and I came to love them as I grew into adulthood. I was hit hard by Siskel's passing, but Roger filled a void admirably with his own unflagging optimism and love of film and willingness to give just about anything a chance and view it on its own merits. After losing his speaking voice, his writing voice seem to come alive in a way that was truly profound at times (and a bit too preach at others to be sure). I loved his willingness to reach back to his own childhood and to really lay himself bare for his audience. but above all, the simple fact that he really truly LOVED movies remains an inspiration to me.

He isn't the greatest critic in history, not by a long shot. But what he did for film criticism is unparalleled. He made it okay to debate a movie and agree to disagree about them. And above all, he never stopped pushing people to see them for themselves and form their own opinions and to seek out the hidden gems that too often got overlooked. His "Great Movies" essays were my introduction to a lot of classic and foreign greats, and he will forever hold a near and dear place in my heart for helping to awaken my curiosity, wonder, and love of movies. He was a uniquely genuine human being who overcame many of his own personal failings to become an iconic figure for so many people. I will miss him greatly. Just as i still miss Gene. I occasionally watch old episodes of their show - the older the better - to reminisce with Gene...I suspect that will become an even more regular habit now that Roger is gone too. Goddammit all.

Image

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hearthesilence
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#45 Post by hearthesilence » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:31 am

I actually enjoyed his political op-eds a lot more than his film criticism in recent years. Siskel & Ebert was probably my first exposure to film criticism as well - almost a given since I grew up in Illinois and both of their papers were pretty much the only ones anyone read in my town - but I stopped watching the show after Siskel died, it just wasn't same. Those guys were funny. (Favorite line: "Protestants - people who 'sort of' want a religion."

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warren oates
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#46 Post by warren oates » Sat Apr 06, 2013 2:56 pm

The remembrances I've appreciated most so far have been from Ebert's fellow critics and scholars. I recommend the Rosenbaum link above. And these three, from Jim Emerson, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky and David Bordwell.

And then there's Errol Morris talking about Ebert's early encouragement:
"Here I had someone writing about my work who was a true enthusiast. His enthusiasm has kept me going over the years, and the memory of his enthusiasm will keep me going for as long as I make movies."

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lacritfan
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#47 Post by lacritfan » Sat Apr 06, 2013 11:23 pm

rs98762001 wrote:Fittingly, considering how much he adored The Tree of Life, the last review Ebert filed was for To The Wonder.
Roger Ebert’s last review: ‘To the Wonder’

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rspaight
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#48 Post by rspaight » Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:08 am

Thank God it was Malick and not "The Host" or some awful lowest common denominator comedy.

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hearthesilence
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#49 Post by hearthesilence » Sun Apr 07, 2013 10:51 am

Yeah, going out on Tyler Perry's Temptation would be unfortunate. Siskel wasn't so lucky.

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bearcuborg
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Re: Roger Ebert 1942-2013

#50 Post by bearcuborg » Tue Apr 09, 2013 8:54 pm

hearthesilence wrote:Yeah, going out on Tyler Perry's Temptation would be unfortunate. Siskel wasn't so lucky.
I thought his last review was Pretty Woman @ 7:55

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