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

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Lucy

Scarlett Johansson is an intriguing blank in Luc Besson's "Lucy," which is stranded somewhere between a stranger-in-a-strange-land action thriller and apocalyptic science fiction.

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Hercules

Dwayne Johnson tries, but he’s surrounded by poor CGI and a terrible adaptation of yet another comic book. Ian McShane steals what little movie there…

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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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Puhleeze!

From Tita Dobson, North Hollywood, CA:

Puhleeze! get a reviewer that knows how to communicate. After I read Emerson's review of "The Illusionist," I realized that I still didn't know what the movie was about (other than that Leopold and Eisenheim don't like each other). All I knew is that, if the review practically put me to sleep, why bother seeing the movie?

As the reader slashes through the tall weeds of Emerson's literary ostentatiousness, one encounters prases like: "And as the movie peels back layers of its core conundrum, the images and their colors become clearer and brighter." It's hard to find stuff like this outside the arena of self-consciously artsy and intellectually pretentious academia.

I know Roger Ebert is ill (and I do wish him a speedy recovery), but, really. Can't you find someone who sounds like a real human being rather than a caricature of the "artiste" trying to impress the masses? How painful.

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