Trial by Fire
The film plods at points, trudging along, and there are a few misguided narrative "devices" tacked on, but still, "Trial by Fire" bristles with anger.
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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.
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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.
LONDON - No film in the last 10 years has gotten better reviews in London than Warren Beatty's "Bonnie and Clyde," which opened here last week and in Chicago Friday. Beatty had all the reviews clipped out and stuck in a cardboard folder, which was resting on the coffee table in his room at the Gloucester Hotel. He kept pointing to the folder as if it was an exhibit and this was a trial.
LONDON - So here was David Hemmings, home again, drinking a pint of beer in his neighborhood pub. He lifted his pint from the counter, carried it over to a table in the corner, sat down drank deeply and sighed.
LONDON - All was abustle in the abandoned conservatory of the Duke of Langley's late manorial seat. Two prop men were delicately arranging a chess game between skeletons while a third. high up against one wall, was pulling a hidden wire to make an enormous dragon sit up and look around.
David Steinberg is a wee slip of a lad. So there it is in print. We were eating raspberry sherbet one day, and Steinberg said, "Look, when you do this article, how are you going to start it?"
When the producer is Ross Hunter, you go to him. He greeted his visitor at 10 a.m. last Monday in his suite at the Ambassador East. He was garbed in a blue silk dressing gown with Japanese sleeves, and he apologized, but - well, it was 10 in the morning, you know. His latest film: "Thoroughly Modern Millie."
At first the screen is filled by an enormous bunny tail. Then the camera pulls back to show the Chicago Playboy Club, and there's Hugh Hefner, nodding to his friends and heading for the door.
Who's peeking out from under a stairway, Calling the name that's lighter than air?
"Here's another one," Severn Darden said. He was standing on the other side of the police station reading descriptions of Chicago's most wanted criminals.
"You wanna hear a funny story?" Jacqueline Susann said. "When 'Valley of the Dolls' came out in Russia, it was reviewed in Pravda. "So somebody sent us the review and we had it translated. They said it was a very exotic story."
Up in the 2400 block of Lincoln Ave., there is still a grocery and a bar and a butcher shop, and there is still the Biograph Theater, which is 40 years old this week.