A mostly pleasant surprise in a year that has produced a lack of stellar animated outings.
The place for everything that doesn't have a home elsewhere on RogerEbert.com, this is a collection of thoughts, ideas, snippets, and other fun things that Roger and others posted over the years.
More moviegoers see films on video in some form than ever before -- whether streaming on demand, cable or satellite, instant download services, DVD or Blu-ray. Even high-profile pictures become available to home viewers before or at the same time as their theatrical release. Reviewing them is a job for... The Demanders!
Our Far-Flung Correspondents are cinephiles from all over the world, hand-picked by Roger Ebert to write about movies from their unique international perspectives. They include contributors from (alphabetically) Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Great Britain, India, Mexico, the Philippines, South Korea, Turkey and the U.S. They converge every year at Ebertfest.
Since he started as film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times in 1967, and began covering movies locally and at international film festivals, Roger Ebert has met and interviewed countless movie idols, artists and unknowns -- some of them even before they became famous. There's hardly a major figure in the history of movies, from the last part of the 20th century into the 21st, that he hasn't encountered.
Roger Ebert has attended international film festivals and events for almost half a century, from the Kolkata International Film Festival to the Academy Awards. In addition to his coverage, our contributors report the latest from Cannes, Telluride, Toronto, Sundance and other movie showcases world-wide.
"Life Itself," based on Roger Ebert's memoir and directed by Steve James, will open in theaters and be available On Demand on July 4, 2014.
The Cannes International Film Festival is the most talked-about film festival of the year, where directors from around the world showcase their newest work, from the most challenging art cinema to the big blockbusters. For many years, Roger Ebert and a team of contributors have covered Cannes, and we are continuing that tradition with start-to-finish coverage from around the festival.
A collection of tributes to Roger from various sources.
The opening shot of a movie can tell us a lot about how to view and interpret what follows. It can even represent the whole movie in miniature. The Opening Shots Project collects illustrated analyses of some of Jim Emerson's favorites, and contributions from Scanners readers.
When Lillian Gish arrived at the Armour Mansion in Lake Bluff for her role in Robert Altman's “A Wedding”, one of the first people she ran into was Dina Merrill, the actress whose mother was Marjorie Merriweather Post, the famous socialite.
CANNES, France -- Yes, it was very pleasant. We sat on the stern of Robert Altman's rented yacht in the Cannes harbor, and looked across at the city and the flags and the hills. There was a scotch and soda with lots of ice, and an efficient young man dressed all in white who came on quiet shoes to fill the glasses when it was necessary.
Billy (Silver Dollar) Baxter traveled to the Cannes Film Festival every year with two old friends, Herb and Anna Steinman of New York City. He always introduced Mrs. Steinman as “Jack Nicholson’s shrink,” and Herb as “the retired millionaire and my old buddy-boy.” From time to time over the years, Baxter and Steinman had purchased the rights to films at Cannes, and released them in the United States. Their purchases included "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg" and Lina Wertmuller’s "Love and Anarchy," and in 1977 they were hot on the trail of a Canadian film titled "Outrageous!"
Other Ebert interviews and set visits with Steven Spielberg:
Lunch with Otto (1972)Skidoo: On the set with Preminger (1968)
Animated cartoons have traditionally been places of slapstick and wonderment and only the occasional wicked stepmother. But not in the world of Ralph Bakshi: His first feature, “Fritz The Cat”, was an X-rated excursion into the urban underworld, and in “Heavy Traffic”, “Coonskin” and “Hey, Good Lookin’”, he examined gamblers, pimps, street gangs, dope pushers and 1950s juvenile delinquents.
“Rocky” and “Network” - one about fighting your
It is a sunny day in Stockholm, two years ago in May. Ingmar Bergman is in residence at Film House, shooting “Face to Face.” Silence reigns, as it always does when Bergman works: “No other director in the world has such quiet sets,” Liv Ullmann writes in her notebook. She sits in her tiny dressing room, wearing an old white muslin shirt and a full cotton skirt. Her feet are tucked beneath her.
BIG SUR, CA -- The Dirty Harry style, Clint Eastwood was explaining, is simplicity itself: "You start with this ultimate fantasy character, this guy who's always fighting the establishment, who isn't interested in the intricacies of society, who tells his boss to go to hell. You equip him with a .44 magnum, pointing out that it's the most powerful handgun in the world. You make him a cop and send him out into the streets. And you whittle down his dialog." Eastwood, as unlike this description as possible, was sipping herb tea on a veranda overlooking the Pacific. The dry December sunlight spilled down and the hills of Big Sur rose behind him, and his dialog wasn't whittled down at all. Among other things, Eastwood talks a lot more than the characters he plays, perhaps because he has more to say.