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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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An open letter to Roger Ebert from Sundance

From James Rocchi at The Huffington Post:

Roger Ebert is not, in fact, up in Park City for the Sundance Film Festival right now. I am, screening films and working in the cold, and while there's plenty of old friends and new about -- every press screening at Sundance is like a high school reunion, if only for the A.V. Club — I was thinking of Ebert this week fairly obvious reasons. I've met Roger often over the years, and for some reason some stupid internal mechanism of self-deprecation, I would wager — I always, always assume he will not remember me, or who I am. He does, of course, because he's a gentleman, but in my mind I tell myself that Ebert's mental file of "white dudes with glasses who are film critics and like to wear sweater vests" must be full to bursting, so I always re-introduce myself when I run into him. But I have friends who know him well enough, and one of them told me a few weeks ago "Ebert won't be at Sundance; he's having surgery on the 24th, for his voice."

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