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Roger Ebert

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Reply #285 on: April 04, 2013, 07:33:01 PM

Michael Moore will be on Piers Morgan tonight at 9 PM EST, remembering Roger Ebert.  It'll rerun again at midnight.


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Reply #286 on: June 14, 2015, 05:37:50 PM
This is actually -- I think it's called propaganda. Specifically, agitprop, and my thoughts are Soviet Montage. There you go. Since recently here at Xixax I remembered telling a person that storytelling isn't your perspective requires legwork, which is always interesting in that one never has to explain the advantages of a story to a person, anyway of course I rest on the shoulders of giants about stories being kinda silly sometimes, and there is another option if you wanna think about it. The first quote is Ebert, then "totally unrelated actually, except by theme" there's a Tsai Ming-liang quote, which is funny because Ming-liang was brought up today in a separate conversation linked by me disagreeing with people. It's all rather cosmic to me, but that's just because I read and watch movies often, and talk about them here.

I've quoted this irl like 5x and it's my new favorite thing to say, it's from Ebert's '68 review of Thomas Crown Affair, and Ebert is actually describing what Thomas Crown Affair lacks to him:

But that was a narrative film; that is, it had a story and told it. I am not so old-fashioned as to demand that every movie explain itself, that every plot mesh like the great grind-wheels of Victorian literature, that everything be tidied up at the end. The best directors often choose mood and effect instead of plot, as film.

I bet it's actually easy for you to picture me saying "I am not so old-fashioned as to demand that every movie explain itself, that every plot mesh like the great grind-wheels of Victorian literature."

The second quote is from an interview Mark Olsen had with Tsai Ming-liang:

Why do we always assume that shooting a film is to tell a story? “Rebels of the Neon God” apparently is not about telling a story. Even now, I still don’t think it is conventional. My works have always been about expressing life experiences and sensations. In terms of the format, I am not passionate about “storytelling,” but rather I approach movies more in the prosaic or poetic way. “Rebels of the Neon God” has been just like this. When I was shooting a film, I would constantly remind myself that “I am shooting a film, but not telling a story.” With this approach, I have been freer.

I'd like to drop my mic now, mother fuckers. Jk kinda and xx.


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Reply #287 on: June 14, 2015, 06:18:57 PM
Shock to no one I vibe, Rebels has to be my favorite old movie discovery in forever. Damn near perfect in my book. And look at this beauty

Something Spanish

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Reply #288 on: April 05, 2018, 09:02:49 AM
I consider myself lucky to have grown up in a time where Siskel & Ebert was being aired. Admittedly, from the time I first became aware of the show in the mid-90's it did not have such a strong impact on my moviegoing habits, more of a passing interest than seminal influence. I always enjoyed hearing the duo's opinions and quibbles, as well as viewing the movie clips they'd play. I loved movies as a kid, but thanks to a little film known as Pulp Fiction, I became obsessed with the medium beyond the adolescent blockbuster offerings and definitely remember watching the boys' show dedicated solely to my new favorite film as they espoused its influence on contemporary releases. Siskel & Ebert was a show I didn't seek out with a weekly dedication, but certainly would not change the channel if it was on. Through the years I watched less, but read Ebert's reviews almost regularly. That stopped, too, around 2004. It wasn't until Ebert's passing that I became the great admirer of the man I am today, where I get a little sentimental after seeing a truly great movie and thinking Ebert will never see it, know how great it is. It even gets me thinking about all the great movies I'll miss out on when my time comes.

A few months before the release of Life Itself I began reading his archived online journals. I was stunned. So many entries were filled with such love, insight, poignancy. I began reading his Great Movies books followed by his autobiography of the same name. Reading his Great Movies books is very different from his reviews. A lot of his weekly reviews were made up mostly of Ebert writing a plot synopsis with very little about how he felt, the Great Movies essays were made up mostly of why he felt these titles were great. Not many writers loved movies as much as Ebert did, his love as infectious as any great piece of writing. That is what endures me to his reviews/essays to this day. I read a lot of writing on film, not many have nakedly display their affection as Ebert does. I enjoy reading Pauline Kael's books, too, but her cynicism is off the charts, which is actually part of her appeal in a way. There are certain critics I still read regularly, mostly those writing for New York publications and a few online, but I don't usually look for their reviews of older films. Ebert has been gone for five years now and I probably read a little something from him every other day if not every day. I love his love of movies because it mirrors my own, taste notwithstanding. For anyone who hasn't read Life Itself should do so, it's so touching and heartfelt. His writings of Gene Siskel, in particular, get me very emotional. Their bond, the love/hate relationship. He was a very witty man, as displayed on the many talk show appearances he did, and always game to poke fun of himself, as evident in the many times he was a guest on the Howard Stern show, getting weighed by the crew and facing humiliation with comedic humbleness. Just wanted to share some thoughts on the man five years on, as my admiration for him grows stronger with the passing of time.


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Reply #289 on: April 05, 2018, 03:49:48 PM
Thank you for that love letter to Roger.  I, too, watched "the boys" regularly--but my viewing started back with their oribinal PBS show(s).  Of the two of them my tastes matched Roger's the most closely.  I found Gene often a little too gruff and mean spirited, somehow.  They certainly had a chemistry together--but I'll admit it often felt like parents fighting when they disagreed a little too strenuously.  (They didn't really like each other--especially at the beginning--but I think they developed a deep regard for each other eventually.)  I missed him when Gene died, and even more so when Roger did too.  I never read Roger's book--I may have to put it on my list.
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