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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

the best tribute I can offer Roger Ebert…

…is a rerun of my What Film Critics Do meme thingy:

what film critics do

Ebert is a huge part of why I do what I do. It was because of his work with Gene Siskel on At the Movies on PBS that I first got an inkling that it was possible to talk about — to argue about — movies. His effect on me and what I’ve done with my life is incalculable.

I hate hate hate hate hate it — to paraphrase Ebert — when a writer says he or she is at a loss for words. You’re a writer, dammit. It’s your job to find the words. I’ve said this to writers I’ve been editing who’ve taken that lazy route.

But… I have no words right now.

So I’m just gonna go back to writing the review I’ve been working on this evening. And then I might watch another movie.


posted in:
critic buzz | maryann buzz
  • RussellListon

    “So I’m just gonna go back to writing the review I’ve been working on this evening. And then I might watch another movie.” Sounds like the perfect way to honor Roger Ebert. R.I.P. When I started getting into movies his reviews we’re what helped give me my basic film education.

  • Patrick

    Seconded. Keep doing what you’re doing: praise and eviscerate movies that deserve either.

  • FormerlyKnownAsBill

    “What’s more, I’ll be able at last to do what I’ve always fantasized about doing: reviewing only the movies I want to review.”

    that makes me sad. but i’m so grateful he reviewed all those pieces of garbage that he didn’t want to bother with.

  • RogerBW

    I didn’t find out about Ebert until the thing with Siskel was over. But he inspired, I think, pretty much all the reviewers I now read, and his own reviews were always worth reading even when he’d clearly missed the point of the film completely.
    (At least when the Sun-Times made it possible to distinguish his own reviews from those of its other writers, which wasn’t always the case.)

  • I think he probably inspired most critics — at least those from the US and maybe Canada — under 50.

  • Beowulf

    Great, MaryAnn!

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