I’m sure there will be a bevy, a multitude, an avalanche of more eloquent remembrances of Roger Ebert than mine, so I will keep it short and sweet.
Without him, I would have never started this blog in the first place. At 13, I would have never started writing reviews. At 8, I would have never started to talk about film incessantly. He is my hero and my inspiration, and one of the biggest reasons why I love film and why I ever wanted to delve into its history and analyze its nuances, magic, majesty, and sometimes its follies.
I may not have always agreed with him, or even liked some of his reviews, but I always, always admired his passion and integrity. Losing him, even though I’ve never met him or even made contact with him, is like losing the person who got you into the thing you love and are intensely passionate about.
As Chris Jones titled his beautiful profile of Ebert, he will always be The Essential Man.
Goodbye, Mr. Ebert, and thank you.
P.S. I also want to thank everyone who reads this blog or has ever read my writing. It means the world to me. Thank you to all the film enthusiasts, bloggers, critics, buffs, etc. whom I talk to or have talked to, for you, like Ebert, have taught me a great deal about the movies, life, and writing and have made me a better critic and writer (and sometimes person). Thank you all, so much.
Roger Ebert recently posted an article giving his reasons and theories as to why box office revenue had decreased in the last two years. You can find the article here.
In it he cited 6 basic reasons:
- Lack of event films
- High ticket prices
- “The theater experience”
- Refreshment prices
- Others ways of watching movies
- Lack of choice
Here is my response, vehement, sardonic, snarky, and somewhat snobby.
Agree on all points. Going to the movies isn’t what it used to be. When you went to a film years ago it was something fun to do a mini event. But now, the only reason is for “the event movie”, which honestly are overloaded pieces of crap because the execs put so much effort into making them event films. The individual quality of the film is subjective of course and variable. But you won’t get insight or thought from today’s audience. You’ll only get “that was effing awesome” or “that sucked”. You won’t get why. It’s like if everyone went to a great buffet where they were serving a large turkey that had been carefully cured for hours. The fat content is through the roof. The are other dishes there as well, the supporting players. And the guests gorge on it, regardless of its health content. And what do they say? “Oh that meal was great” blah blah blah. No comment on how it actually tasted, how the ingredients worked together, how each dish was complemented by its respective side dish or drink. That’s why I hate today’s public taste. They don’t care at all about what they’re watching. I would at least respect someone who likes Transformers and understands and articulates why, but that inability to do so pushes me over the edge. It’s just eating or watching without real consideration. Also, fanboys and girls suck. They’re annoying and rude during a film.