Roger Ebert, the Critic Behind the Thumb

 

What is film criticism? This may sound like a lofty philosophical question, but I suspect to most people it has a down-to-earth, empirical answer. Film criticism is two guys (and usually it is guys) arguing: shifting in their seats, rolling their eyes, pointing fingers and interrupting, and every now and then agreeing. Or that’s the way it looks on television at least.

One of the guys who made it look that way, who made the crazy idea that movie critics could thrive on TV seem like a no-brainer, recently announced his departure from the airwaves. On April 1 Roger Ebert published a letter to readers of The Chicago Sun-Times that was essentially a farewell to the long-running, widely syndicated weekly program that has made him not simply the best-known movie reviewer in America, but the virtual embodiment of this curious profession.

(New York Times)


Classic Movies, Commentary


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