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I've seen that film before...

I've been following the comments about Paul Haggis' “Crash” with interest, far more than I did in seeing the film itself. When it came out, I don't think I knew it was by Haggis. Had I known, I probably would have tried harder to see it, because Haggis was the creator of one of the best TV series I have ever seen, a very short-lived show called “EZ Streets,” which had a large ensemble cast (much like “Crash”) dealing with crime, political corruption, drug abuse, revenge, and much more. I remember watching it at the time and comparing it with the work of one of my favourite directors and writers, John Sayles- specifically his film “City of Hope.”

When CRASH appeared in theatres last year, I remember watching the ads and thinking that it looked like a darker version of Lawrence Kasdan's "Grand Canyon," and I wondered how many times that movie needed to be made. I already have a bit of a grudge against Kasdan for stealing from Sayles: I didn't feel much like seeing Haggis stealing from Kasdan stealing from Sayles.

I know, we're supposed to see movies before we critique them, we're supposed to judge them on their own merits, but sometimes as a regular moviegoer I feel that I have the right to stay away from something that I feel like I have seen before, no matter how critically acclaimed it is. I may see it on video later and regret my choice; so be it. Perhaps part of the problem is how the movie is promoted. In any case, if Paul Haggis' next film is about a pair of twin girls who meet for the first time at summer camp and conspire to reunite their separated parents, I doubt I will see that either, even if it is a new idea to some.

Keep up the good work,

Scott Marshall
New Brunswick, CANADA

Roger Ebert

Roger Ebert was the film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times from 1967 until his death in 2013. In 1975, he won the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished criticism.

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