Whenever a celebrity dies, the media goes nuts, but so does the Amerian populace. Last night Piers Morgan was asking William Baldwin (the major cultural figure), of all people, for his thoughts on Ebert's death. Several of my friends (and these are all otherwise smart people with college educations) posted a sugary-sweet cartoon of Roger Ebert meeting Gene Siskel in movie seats on a cloud to watch a sunset ("Saved you some popcorn!"), as if (a) they were best friends who dreamed of being with one another in the next life (though they respected each other, they had a very prickly and testy relationship); and (b) as if Roger Ebert were going to the Christian heaven (he was an avowed atheist).
Fuck off, OP.
Too soon, OP.
That goes back to Mary Hart. Whenever a celeb met with disaster or death, she rushed out to every celeb hangout in Hollywood to ask their opinion -- many hearing the news from her for the first time. That was like winning the trifecta for her - if she was the one to break the news. She was also known for shopping for funeral frocks so she would look stylish while reporting from a funeral event.
Don't worry, OP. When you die, no one will remember you.
Two thumbs down, OP!
OP, step away from the computer, go outside and get some fresh air, you sound a bit piqued.
Strange S&E would both die of cancer.
I remember really looking forward to their show as a teen and they taught me how to view movies. There wasn't much on TV back then, esp. on weekends.
I didn't know any other kids who watched PBS.
I still don't like "My Dinner With Andre", though.
I pretty much agree, OP.
Esp the part about him and Siskel and the Christian heaven.
People - especially Christian people - just have to put their own spin on these things. As if you wipe out reality with their cotton-candy take on the universe.
I agree with OP and r10. I think it's totally fine and good for Ebert's death to be mourned and life to be celebrated, but not in a saccharine "oh he's in Heaven now talkin bout movies with Jesus!" way. It's disrespectful to his beliefs. I bet if Mahatma Gandhi died in the internet age he'd be depicted in FB posts chillin in the Christian Heaven, too. So annoying.
I totally agree OP. He was a film critic for god's sake! Since most people in TV News are frustrated actors and film people, there will be more, unfortunately!
I agree with the OP.
I don't understand the front page big deal about Ebert at newyorktimes.com and the significant outlay of time and press by TV news and print and internet websites.
You watch too much tv, OP. Are you an 80 year old widow or something?
Slate.com has an article where people whomworked with Siskel and Ebert looked back on their experiences with them. Gene Siskel was a first class asshole.
Who gives a damn about Siskel and Ebert?
Other than the sad fact that Ebert's life was cut short - and that is genuinely sad - and that he suffered mutilation which was sad too......
and that Siskel's life was sadly cut short too.
Otherwise, who gives a damn about reading any details about Siskel and Ebert?
It is definitely a slow news period.
Yes, R17, we want to hear more about Liza!!!
From the slate article
If an opportunity to one-up the other guy presented itself, they would seize it like a dog to a bone. It was part of their personalities, especially Gene’s. He was a serious card player. As such, everything became a game with rules that he had tailored to better his chances of winning. For instance, one of his rules was that if I had left my appointment book open, it was OK for him to read what I had written in it. He would then puzzle out my notes in seconds. Say I had jotted down, “Roger in California” on a certain date. Gene would know Roger would be flying there for a Bruce Willis interview because he knew Bruce Willis had a movie coming out around that time. He also knew it meant Roger could scoop him. That, of course, couldn’t happen. As a result, Gene would move heaven and earth to make sure he got the interview before Roger. (DL)
That same conference room had this long table that Gene used to occasionally rest under. It was so long, in fact, that it covered him completely. One day, he went under the table to catch a few winks while I was typing his and Roger’s scripts for the teleprompter. Not long afterward, Roger came in the room, and without noticing Gene, he made a phone call to arrange an interview with Nastassja Kinski for a piece in the Sun-Times. When Roger left, Gene got up and hit the redial button. He proceeded to tell Nastassja Kinski’s representative that he was Roger’s assistant and that Roger had to cancel the interview. Then he looked at me and said, “Not a word!” (JD)
I remember working together with them in the same room and Gene calling his secretary to tell her to call Roger at a certain extension at PBS so he would have to leave the room, which gave Gene the opportunity to go through Roger’s appointment book.6 (LH)
Go to hell, OP.
Roger Ebert was ten thousand times the man you are.
Ratings-driven grief porn.
He's been dead for 9 hours. Shut up.
Has Burt Reynolds commented? They were merciless critics of his good ol' boy movies.
I think it was on Johnny Carson where he said, "The fat one takes up two chairs.... the other one sits in the crack".
I do not understand the procedure of asking other celebrities to comment on someone's death.
Who gives a damn what other celebrities think about someone's death?
Ridiculous filler materials for endless hours of TV that needs to be filled and endless websites which need to be filled.
Ebert seemed like a good guy.
Siskel seemed like a creep and a bully.
Ebert was incredibly cool and thoughtful , not just about movies. Go find the esquire profile from a few years ago. He really was remarkable.
Gene sounds like a douche.
This lionization of him as some sort of great journalist is ludicrous. He was a film critic for christ sake. Critics are the lowest form of writer. Just because all you dimwits need him to validate or provide your opinion about film doesn't make him worthy of this hyperbolic eulogy usually reserved for actually creative people.
Bumping just to annoy asshole OP.
He's been dead barely 24 hours. That's far from Tim Russert territory (where you actually would have a legitimate complaint.)
The weird thing about Christians imagining their departed loved ones yucking it up in Heaven is that according to fairly basic Christian theology ain't nobody going to Heaven (or Hell) until the Second Coming and Judgement Day.
OP eats the giant turds of Bruce Vilanch.
OP is clearly going through the anger stage of grief.
[quote]This lionization of him as some sort of great journalist is ludicrous.
No it's not, R28. Your ignorance of his writing outside of film reviews doesn't erase the existence of those writings.
You're an ignorant moron. I pity you in your bitter smallness.
He was amazingly creative, and his blog was exception, not to mention all the books he wrote.
OP is correct, the rest of you are idiots. He's not saying anything negative about Ebert. He's commenting on the coverage, which is clearly overdone. He was a critic not a pope or world leader. He appeared to be kind, smart, thoughful. He suffered, he overcame, he left his mark. But 24 hour coverage about his death is insane. It's what the media does, remember the month long Michael Jackson grief porn? All of you who are idnignant about what the OP posted are proof positive of his point.
RIP Roger, and thanks for the lesson in why we shouldn't drink, smoke, and eat junk food.
The combo of drinking and smoking is hazardous to the mouth, throat, and face. It's too bad that that was the image presented as 'cool,' in the media for so long.
It's really great that peeps have overcome those two addictions and they are now considered trashy behaviors.
It was so sad to learn about his death. He was relatively young. People can live longer nowadays. I first learned about his death from Datalounge, it was shocking although i knew he was very ill. The funny thing is that some months ago i was thinking that his movie reviews would be greatly missed if he...and i didn't like to think about it more. Now he is gone for keeps from planet Earth and...ok i won't be more soapy. What i want to say here is that Roger Ebert was very important for cinema because his reviews most of the time were really insightful and certainly never phony. He had a good will for movies. He had such power as a critic and yet personally i don't remember him being sarcastic in his writing, he was just critical in a constructive way. I think that Roger Ebert as a critic was a paradigm to be copied. For a critic he was way too cool and warm and that's the essence of art, isn't it?
Op, you are wrong and i know that deeply in your heart you know it. Probably you just troll, however you should learn in some cases trolling is not that classy. This is one of those cases, clearly.
Bon Voyage Mr Ebert. I hope that one is more closer to happiness after life and i know that life is very beautiful at times...Roger Ebert
Best Wishes from tiny me
Very sad news on Roger...RIP
You're a cunt, OP.
I grew up watching & reading Ebert and am sad at his death but agree with OP that the comic showing Siskel & Ebert in heaven together is dumb and both guys would have savaged it! (Which is why I liked them.)
Ebert's autobiography is a great read & it surprised me how charmed I was by him.
"It's really great that peeps have overcome those two addictions"
God, I hope I'm never a "peep."
I'll take my cigarettes and beer, thanks, if that's what it's come to.
OP, stellar asswipe are you. The man has only been dead 24 hours.
Twenty-four hours? It feels like 24 years. The NPR replays of interviews. The news clips from the old show. The stars adding their two cents. The fucking widow weeping and talking about he was like a father to her brood. Urp. Sputter. Gag. For a movie critic. People are just wailing because their disgustingly into his "courage" for running around with a towel around his dribblemouth when they took his jaw off. Please.
And he was fat. Look what it took for him to finally lose weight.
I loved watching Ebert and Siskel, when they first started on PBS. I seriously haven't stopped crying since I heard this horrible news. :(
OMG. I'm crying as I type. My heart goes out.
Roger, this Pulitzer Prize winning author, actually wrote the screen play for Beyond The Valley of The Dolls, which I present to you below.
Be warned, the dialogue is incredibly dense and erudite and deserves many and many a listening to. Willy the Shake, eat your heart out.
The important question is....what did Kelly Osborne have to say?
Can't even breath(e)...
R34 is right. He was an beloved public figure and his as such his death should be mentioned, but I too am sick of media "grief porn."
He was very bright and talented and I consider myself a fan of his work, but I also recognize that a lot of his career success was based on pure luck. He was a guy in the right place at the right time, and as such, he was gifted with the opportunity to make a mark on the world that most people will never have. I'm sure there's thousands, if not millions, of equally talented film nerd writers who would fucking kill for the career he was blessed with.
And R36, Ebert was sober for over three decades at the time of his death, so somehow I don't think that's what did it. You couldn't pass up the opportunity to make a snide little judgmental comment though, could you? Like everyone who enjoys drinking is going to end up with part of their jaw amputated.
I didn't always agree with Roger Ebert, but I respected his film reviews. When he mentioned what a great film "Dark City" was, he was right!
Love you Roger...
r52 I have to disagree with you about there being thousands of people able to write film reviews as well as he did. Where are they?
There are good film critics but there is a reason so many people are truly sad. He was special. If you followed his writing and not just his show you would know that.
Sure a big part of his success was luck and timing, but he worked his ass off and was a truly gifted writer who was able to be both everyman and literary. There was joy in his work that I rarely see in other critics.
He's in atheist hell so it doesn't matter.
I'm so tired of hateful people who think they are being "realistic" and "down to earth" when no, they are just being assholes. Guess what, OP, some people feel this thing called empathy, maybe you've heard about it, although I highly doubt you've ever felt it. If you are incapable of it, at least shut the fuck up and allow others to feel however they damn well please and stop being the hate police and downing people who aren't as cynical and mean spirited as you.
R52, the virulent dangerous combination which can result in throat, tongue, esophogeal, jaw cancer is doing both heavy drinking and heavy smoking thruout one's life or even part of one's life.
This was a major topic of conversation in the media during the author Christopher Hitchen's demise from throat cancer cause by heavy smoking and heavy drinking - a year or two ago.
I guess you have never heard of the particular dangers of this combination. Since you seem to be dwelling solely on drinking.
The guy had so much inner strength, along with being a gifted writer. No one can replace him.
Also R36, you are not well-informed.
Cigarette smoking in early parts of your life can strike you down decades later in your life even after having quit for a good while.
Same with heavy smoking and heavy drinking combined in an earlier part of your life can strike you down decades later in a later part of your life.
For an example, Peter Jennings was smoker thru early decades as an adult, but then he quit.
After 9-11, he resumed smoking after having quit many years before, but he then got lung cancer and died 3 or 4 months after the diagnosis. A very quick death. And at a young age by today's standards.
R59 here. I meant to address my comments to R52, not R36.
I did not really care about his opinion on movies. He had an ordinary taste quite often.
Edgy and movies that are pushing the envelope he often gave a miss.
I am often wondering if film critics are in bed with certain studios, production companies or actors, BTW.
He was married to a corporate lawyer who paid for everything for him.
Grief Nazi at r56
He was a film critic for the masses. He wrote the kind of review you read whey you are deciding what movie to see at your nearest multiplex on a Saturday night.
Jonathan Rosenbaum wrote about film with much more depth and complexity.
I just want to compliment R33 on his bitchslap of R28.
Roger was a kind, gentle man who found a way to criticize without being mean and vindictive. He won the Pullitzer for Christ's sake! How many film critics have that accomplishment to their name? The grief porn is too much, but the man did have an outsized influence in the entertainment industry, so it is natural. If it bothers you, turn off the goddam TV and do something else.
It killed Gene that in the earliest days of Sneak Previews, he had to introduce Roger to viewers as the Pulitzer Prize–winning film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times. Instead, every week he would come up with a new insult for his and the staff’s amusement. My personal favorite: “Seated to my left is Roger Ebert, film critic for the Las Vegas Shopper News.” (JD)
Roger Ebert is not a person who would ordinarily receive the amount of attention his death has garnered.
His death is only getting this huge amount of attention because of his severe facial disfigurement, his cancer, the oddity of what the cancer did to his face, jaw, and mouth (removal of his entire jaw), his inability to talk or eat because of the disfigurement, and his strength of being able to go out in public with the very severe disfigurement.
"I support freedom of choice. My choice is to not support abortion, except in cases of a clear-cut choice between the lives of the mother and child. A child conceived through incest or rape is innocent and deserves the right to be born."
I wonder what he thought about woman's rights.
Interesting r70. There was something about him that always rubbed me the wrong way. Obviously he wasn't a hard core conservative, but I think he did retain more conservatism from his upbringing than he liked to acknowledge. In the article, he implies he was never homophobic, but his review of Cabaret (1972) drew a parallel between Nazism and homosexuality. Makes his promotion of Crash over Brokeback Mountain, seem more suspicious too. He was also extremely narcissistic, constantly complimenting his own intelligence. Can't say I'm sorry to see him go.
His promotion of Crash over BBM had less to do with homophobia than with his general softspot for African American/race issue movies.
In his case they went hand in hand.
I am very doubtful of his self expresses intelligence. He loved even the shittiest Tom Cruise movies. He often loved very trite movies.
Are you over it now, OP?
Ebert was a good critic up until the 90's, when he started giving glowing reviews for hack, big-budget films without merit.
Part of me thinks he was paid off by the studios at that time. He changed so dramatically in his standards that he was responsible for luring audiences to undeserving films in their first weekends, creating the tepid blockbusters we now know and hate.
Or, the cancer affected his judgement.
I hadn't notice anything in the way of excessive grief for the recent death of the Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic Roger Ebert.
The fact that OP has addressed this, and whether we are to believe OP is another thing. But at the same time, it reveals a jealousy about OP that is strange.
R69 is correct.
R37 sounds like a 13 year old girl.
Every weekend, I would hit his site to check reviews for the movies that were opening.
This is the first weekend where I can't do that, and it's genuinely upsetting. We've lost an amazing voice.
OP can fuck off.
People have different ways of propitiating the god of death. Making a big woo-woo out of celebrity deaths is a manifestation of this, like making shrines out of flowers and teddy bears. I think part of the horror over the "Ding-dong, the witch is dead" reaction to Margaret Thatcher's death is that it's contrary to this spirit of soothing the souls of the dead and triggers a subconscious horror of Maggie rising from the grave to avenge herself.
Hate him. Glad he's dead.
We've moved on to other grief.
It certainly was nice of the Chicago Archdiocese to allow Holy Name Cathedral to be used for the memorial service of an Atheist.
I saw the Ebert documentary LIFE ITSELF and thought it was pretty terrific. The warts and all presentation of his terminal illness can be tough to watch. Loved the Siskel and Ebert clips and outtakes. Those guys were the best. I watched them since their PBS days.
This is for you, OP.
And yes, supporting [italic]Crash[/italic] for Best Picture over [italic]Brokeback[/italic] makes you a homophobe. His wife was black, that's why he campaigned for it.
Something tells me that when Ops time is up, NO ONE will grieve HIM.
Ebert was the last critic I would listen to for an opinion about movies, sorry but he was way too much ... I don't know corporate.
Towards the end of his life, Ebert got really nasty and hateful.
Agree with R88. His decline as a critic was quite the fall towards the end.
Ebert is a good critic to read if you're starting out as a baby cineaste -- my introduction to foreign, silent and classic Hollywood films was all thanks in part to reading him as a kid -- but as you grow older and develop a more refined taste and knowledge of film, you realize that he wasn't much of a deep thinker. He's more of a great prose stylist than a critical thinker. (This is what separates him from Pauline Kael. Kael was a great writer, thinker and humorous, and there's always pleasure returning back to her work, even if you disagree with the majority of her conclusions because she argued her points so well.)
IMO, Jonathan Rosenbaum was a greater critic than Ebert. If anything Rosenbaum should be as famous and revered as Ebert.
Sorry, that should be "Kael was a great writer, thinker and humorist"
I saw "Life Itself" a few hours ago. About 40 minutes are about Ebert's long struggle with cancer. Yes, Ebert and his wife were brave. But, it's hard to believe that were not many, many more dark moments than shown in the film.