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Breathe

A film that sentimentalizes and softens what was clearly a very difficult situation, turning something that should be effective and honest into something that too…

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Professor Marston & the Wonder Women

A timely affirmation of feminine power—of the ways in which female wisdom and strength can charge hearts and minds, influence culture and inspire others to…

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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…

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Robert Feder Misses Roger Ebert's Political Writing

The astute political columns of Roger Ebert were the topic of an article published today by former Chicago Sun-Times columnist and Chicago Tribune syndicated columnist Robert Feder at his blog. RogerEbert.com publisher Chaz Ebert is quoted in the article's title, which states that Roger "would've exposed the foolhardy ruse" of Donald Trump's candidacy. "As much as others have tried to explain The Rise of Donald Trump and the threat he poses to our system of government, freedom of the press and our pluralistic society," writes Feder, "few have done it with the clarity, courage and humanity that were the hallmarks of the late, great Chicago journalism icon and film critic." 

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Feder recalls how Ebert elevated the level of discourse on the Internet, resulting in him winning a Webby Award as Person Of The Year in 2010. The article includes a link to the official Webby Awards announcement of Ebert's accolade, which states that his online journal "raised the bar for the level of poignancy, thoughtfulness and critique one can achieve on the Web, while at the same time shining a light on the most important issues facing journalism as it relates to the Internet itself."

Feder refers readers to three key articles in Roger's journal that are especially timely in light of next month's election. The following excerpt is from "The One-Percenters," published April 9th, 2011: "The most visible plutocrat in America is Donald Trump, a man who has made a fetish of his power. What kind of sick mind conceives of a television show built on suspense about which ‘contestant’ he will ‘fire’ next? What sort of masochism builds his viewership? Sadly, I suspect it is based on viewers who identify with Trump, and envy his power over his victims. Don’t viewers understand they are the ones being fired in today’s America?" 

Another column, published on July 20th, 2011, is entitled, "The Republicans Exit History," and could've easily been written yesterday: "Large elements within the Republican Party are abandoning the middle ground of American opinion and pitching in with fringe ideologues. Here and there, this decision may lead to electoral victories. But the tide of history runs against them. It is time for the party to declare its independence from its radical fringe and embrace common sense."

The article concludes with words from Chaz Ebert, who shares her thoughts on Roger's work with Feder. "I have no doubt that he would have helped us make sense of this presidential campaign before we got this far down the road," Chaz says. "Instead of seeing it as just harmless entertainment in the beginning, I would like to think that he would have been blaring an alarm, warning us not to stray too far from our moral compass."

To read the full article, visit Robert Feder's blog.

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