In Memoriam 1942 – 2013 “Roger Ebert loved movies.”

RogerEbert.com

Thumb_men_women_and_children

Men, Women & Children

A potentially interesting premise is handled so badly that what might have been a provocative drama quickly and irrevocably devolves into the technological equivalent of…

Thumb_5kljgdiaf9qbg0wqbxhfsoemmrz

Time Is Illmatic

An excellent documentary that focuses more on why the Illmatic album came to be than how successful it became. Prepare to be schooled in many…

Other Reviews
Review Archives
Thumb_xbepftvyieurxopaxyzgtgtkwgw

Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

Thumb_jrluxpegcv11ostmz1fqha1bkxq

Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

Other Reviews
Great Movie Archives

Cast and Crew

* This filmography is not intended to be a comprehensive list of this artist’s work. Instead it reflects the films this person has been involved with that have been reviewed on this site.

Ebertfest: Synecdoche, Champaign-Urbana

Primary_eb20100324filmfestivals06100329992ar

Charlie Kaufman, the writer and director of "Synecdoche, New York" (2008), my choice for the best film of the decade, will appear after the screening of his masterpiece at Ebertfest 2010. The 12th annual festival will be held April 21-25 at the landmark 1,600-seat Virginia Theater in Champaign-Urbana, and for the first time ever, all festival Q&A sessions and panel discussions will be streamed live on the Internet.

Continue reading →

Frogs rain on California, so never go to a Date Movie

Primary_eb20081217answerman812179981ar

Q. I was puzzled to see only one entry for "Beauty and the Beast" under your Great Movies listing, and while Jean Cocteau's magical 1946 film certainly deserves its status, I was sorely disappointed in the exclusion of the Disney version. I cannot think of a reason why you do not consider Disney's film a Great Movie. Company biases? I would hope a pundit of your standing would be above that. Maybe because there's already a Great Movie called "Beauty and the Beast"?

Continue reading →

Now revealed for you: Charlie Kaufman's writing process

Primary_eb20081119answerman811199980ar

Q. Didja notice "Bummy's Diner" in "Changeling" (where the kid to be exploited as Jolie's "son" is first seen with the drifter in DeKalb)? I just about cried when I saw that most appropriate of tributes -- and better yet, it's vintage 1920s signage on an exterior set that is itself a tribute to Bummy's school of authentic design. All of which makes this moment (see photo) one of the happiest encounters of my lifetime. Just under eight months later, Henry was gone.

Continue reading →

High camp: Does it translate?

Hissy fit over the South Pacific.

Carlos from Venezuela raises some intriguing questions in his comments about "Snakes on a Plane" below. Some excerpts from what he wrote: This leads me to the big question, how in hell is ... New Line Cinema planning to market the movie in territories where the concept of "so bad that is good" is not as widespread as in some other countries, like the US or the UK?

To me the newspaper ads printed in Venezuelan newspapers ... seemed like they were for any of the usual Straight to DVD (pirated or not) movies that open commonly in my country in mainstream Cinemas (like Van Damme flicks, forgettable sequels of classic Disney films and the like)....

They (the printed ads) were trying to appeal the horror factor of the movie/concept, without any indication of the non-existent local hype about the movie, that for most Venezuelans stars the "guy from Blade/XXX: State of the Union/Lethal Weapon/Training Day/Boat Trip/Pulp Fiction" I stress this not because Im trying to make a cheap unPC remark. It is because for most of the audiences in Venezuela, there's no extra "OH the B*das* Motha*c*a Sam Jackson is saying mothaf*c*ing snakes" factor, its basically any familiar African Amercian actor saying subtitled profanites and I have the feeling that it might not be THAT different in Thailand or Ecuador, but I could be wrong.

So what you have left is a plain bad planned plane movie. The movie is totally stripped off its toungue in cheek (aspired) value, and I dont think that we're going to get the explanaiton of its campy factor from Hugo Chávez' Sunday tv show either.

BTW: Im planning to see it. And I will see it in the one cinema closest to the Caraca’s downtown, where I could be almost certain that no one would be polluted by the E! Latinamerica globalized hype machine. For perspective, it may help to remember that among films not originally released as "spoofs" in the United Sates are: "Mommie Dearest," "Showgirls," "Red Dawn," "Rambo: First Blood Part 2," "The Jazz Singer" (Neil Diamond/Laurence Olivier version), "Mystic River" and "Crash" (2005). All of these movies were instantly considered camp classics by a significant minority, even if they weren't received that way by mainstream audiences when they first appeared in theaters.

Continue reading →

Pop notes: 101 essential movies

You must remember this: one of the movies' iconic images.

Further reflections on the 2006 Conference on World Affairs in Boulder, CO: John Lennon said life is what happens to you when you're making other plans. Life is also the process of finding connections between everything that happens to you (there he goes with that "We're all pattern-seeking animals" thing again!). So, last week at the CWA, three panels I was on ran together in my head in ways I think are interesting. But then, it's my head we're talking about, so I'm probably inclined to think my digressions and free-associations are interesting, otherwise I wouldn't have spent so much time mucking about with them.

Continue reading →