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Listen to Me Marlon

A tour-de-force of editing, this is essentially a feature length film about Marlon Brando's life and personality, narrated by Brando himself.

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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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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…

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Outguess Ebert contest update

All winners will be notified that they may have won a prize in this Promotion by mail, telephone or electronic mail (at Sponsor's sole discretion) during March 2005. If any prize notification is rejected or returned as undeliverable, such winner may be disqualified and an alternate winner may be selected. Each winner's name may be published in the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper or on a Chicago Sun-Times or Roger Ebert website. For a list of winners, send a legal-size, self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Outguess Ebert, 350 North Orleans, 10th Floor, Chicago, IL 60654.

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'Baby' stages late-round Oscar rally

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HOLLYWOOD - "Million Dollar Baby" scored a late-round rally Sunday night at the 77th annual Academy Awards as Clint Eastwood's movie about a determined female boxer won for best picture and took Oscars for actress (Hilary Swank), supporting actor (Morgan Freeman) and director (Eastwood).

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The Unwritten Rules of Oscar

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Shhhhhh. Don't tell a soul. Close Oscar-watchers (and Academy insiders) know that what you are about to read is true -- but few like to talk about these things. When it comes to picking Oscar winners, you can study the stats of Oscars past in search of patterns and clues, but there are certain influential paradigms that defy and transcend conventional statistical analysis.

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Who will take home Oscar?

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Last year was the Year of the Hobbit at the Academy Awards. This year the academy will move away from the land of blockbusters and honor a film whose budget was less than the cost of the opening week's ads for just one-third of the "Rings" trilogy. Clint Eastwood's "Million Dollar Baby," which seemed to appear out of nowhere in mid-December, which had no pre-release publicity, which played no festivals and was screened for no focus groups, will win the Oscar as best picture.

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Oscar by the odds

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Nobody can predict with absolute certainty how the majority of the 5,800 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences are going to vote in any given category. The best anybody can do is to go with a gut feeling and study the historical odds.

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Sundance #9: The Winners

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PARK CITY, Utah--Ira Sachs' "Forty Shades of Blue," the story of a marriage that does not work and never could have, won the Grand Jury Prize here Saturday night, as best feature film at Sundance 2005. Eugene Jarecki's "Why We Fight," a film about an America moving toward a state of continuous war, was named best documentary. Jarecki's brother Andrew won the same category in 2003 with "Capturing The Friedmans."

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Sundance #8: 'Forty Shades of Blue'

May Contain Spoilers

PARK CITY, Utah--I saw 27 films at Sundance this year, but of course I missed all the screenings of Ira Sachs' "Forty Shades of Blue," which won the Grand Jury Prize for best dramatic feature. I had a chance to catch up, though; the festival showed it again Saturday night after the awards were (finally) over, and I found myself impressed, but more by the performances than by the story or direction. Miranda July's "Me and You and Everyone We Know" remains, for me, the best film of the festival.

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