A Letter to Momo
Even scenes that work, such as a climax on a rain-soaked bridge, feel like they could have been trimmed by a few hand-drawn frames. Maybe…
Roger Ebert became film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times in 1967. He is the only film critic with a star on Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame and was named honorary life member of the Directors' Guild of America. He won the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Screenwriters' Guild, and honorary degrees from the American Film Institute and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Since 1989 he has hosted Ebertfest, a film festival at the Virginia Theater in Champaign-Urbana. From 1975 until 2006 he, Gene Siskel and Richard Roeper co-hosted a weekly movie review program on national TV. He was Lecturer on Film for the University of Chicago extension program from 1970 until 2006, and recorded shot-by-shot commentaries for the DVDs of "Citizen Kane," "Casablanca," "Floating Weeds" and "Dark City," and has written over 20 books.
Q. To what extent do movies made prior to September 11, 2001, still remain relevant in our lives? We still look at movies made prior to December 7, 1941, such as "M" and "Citizen Kane," and recognize them as the great films that they are, but I watched "Clerks," one of my favorite films, earlier this evening, just to try to divert my mind from the current goings-on, and the petty complaints of a couple of my brethren (I'm from Monmouth County, N.J.) seemed not funny anymore, but rather irrelevant in light of how our existence has changed since 8:58 a.m. Tuesday. I know that we will eventually be able to again appreciate the accomplishments produced by the better angels of our nature, but I wonder if we'll ever be able to again appreciate the small, silly personal and political issues that seemed so large and overwhelming in the '90s. I wonder what you think will become of the wonderful, if seemingly petty, movies of that decade. (Thom Tolan, Norwalk CT)
TORONTO -- A film turned down by the Cannes festival has won the AGF People's Choice Award at 26th annual Toronto Film Festival, which concluded Sunday.
Samuel Z. Arkoff, who in some ways invented modern Hollywood, died Sunday of natural causes in a Burbank hospital. The co-founder of American-International Pictures and the godfather of the beach party and teenage werewolf movies was 83.
This is a book introduction I wrote in 2001. Alibris and Amazon list used copies for as little as $3.50. Google it for no end of affectionate praise.
TORONTO--Through the cloud of sadness which has enveloped the Toronto Film Festival since Tuesday, a few films have shone like beacons.
I was there before the beginning, young fellow. And now it's after the end. -- Mr. Bernstein in "Citizen Kane" TORONTO--This is a meditation on mortality. "I made a conscious decision to work all the time while I was growing up," Christina Ricci told me. "I didn't want people to see me in a movie and be shocked that I wasn't a kid anymore. I wanted to grow up onscreen."
TORONTO--One of the best films at this year's Toronto Film Festival is "too slow," another is a "chick flick," a third is "too weird," and a fourth is "too talky." People told me these things as they were leaving the theater.
TORONTO -- The Toronto Film Festival used to unfold grandly over 10 days. Now it seems to run for a weekend, plus added attractions. The opening three days are so insanely front-loaded that critics go nuts trying to map out their schedules; they stand in the lobby of the Varsity, crossing screenings off their lists.
TORONTO--Seventy-five of his old friends turned up for lunch Saturday with George Christy. Many of them had logged 10 years or more at his annual soiree at the Four Seasons, where the top stars and directors at the Toronto Film Festival mix with Canadian tycoons and political leaders.
Q. Upon reading your 3-star review of "Ghosts Of Mars," I went with a date to see this film. "Ghosts Of Mars" is a travesty, a film destined for the bottom of the direct-to-video release barrel. It is unoriginal (like the fifth film in the last two years set on Mars), unexciting (not one genuine scare or clever action sequence), badly written (they continue to shoot the bad guys despite the fact that they are more dangerous that way) and poorly acted (not one actor transcends the dialogue they were given). The only consolation I could offer anyone involved with the making of this film is that "Ghosts Of Mars" will be easily forgotten. You said the film "delivered on its chosen level." What level was that? The bad movie level? If a film can receive a complimentary review and rating for simply setting its sights low, how can I know when a 3-star movie is truly a good movie or a bad one with no ambitions? (David Boostrom, St. Louis MO)