Roger Ebert (1942-2013)

April 6, 2013 at 7:42 pm (Life & Politics, Reviews & Articles, Roger Ebert)

This was written by Neil Steinberg, April 4th, for the Chicago Sun-Times discussing the life of fellow Sun-Times colleague, Roger Ebert, who sadly passed away at the age of 70. He was someone whose film reviews I enjoyed reading for many, many years. It is going to be very strange to never again be able to read a new Ebert review. May he rest in peace and be up in that great movie stand in the sky watching a classic film with Gene Siskel…

Roger Ebert loved movies.

Except for those he hated.

For a film with a daring director, a talented cast, a captivating plot or, ideally, all three, there could be no better advocate than Roger Ebert, who passionately celebrated and promoted excellence in film while deflating the awful, the derivative, or the merely mediocre with an observant eye, a sharp wit and a depth of knowledge that delighted his millions of readers and viewers.

“No good film is too long,” he once wrote, a sentiment he felt strongly enough about to have engraved on pens. “No bad movie is short enough.”
Ebert, 70, who reviewed movies for the Chicago Sun-Times for 46 years and on TV for 31 years, and who was without question the nation’s most prominent and influential film critic, died Thursday in Chicago. He had been in poor health over the past decade, battling cancers of the thyroid and salivary gland.

He lost part of his lower jaw in 2006, and with it the ability to speak or eat, a calamity that would have driven other men from the public eye. But Ebert refused to hide, instead forging what became a new chapter in his career, an extraordinary chronicle of his devastating illness that won him a new generation of admirers. “No point in denying it,” he wrote, analyzing his medical struggles with characteristic courage, candor and wit, a view that was never tinged with bitterness or self-pity.

On Tuesday, Mr. Ebert blogged that he had suffered a recurrence of cancer following a hip fracture suffered in December, and would be taking “a leave of presence.” In the blog essay, marking his 46th anniversary of becoming the Sun-Times film critic, Ebert wrote “I am not going away. My intent is to continue to write selected reviews but to leave the rest to a talented team of writers hand-picked and greatly admired by me.”

Always technically savvy — he was an early investor in Google — Ebert let the Internet be his voice. His had millions of fans, and he received a special achievement award as the 2010 “Person of the Year” from the Webby Awards, which noted that “his online journal has raised the bar for the level of poignancy, thoughtfulness and critique one can achieve on the Web.” His Twitter feeds had 827,000 followers. Read the rest of this entry »

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President Obama’s Weekly Address (April 6, 2013)

April 6, 2013 at 10:13 am (Life & Politics)

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Roger Ebert (1942-2013)

April 6, 2013 at 7:22 am (Life & Politics, Roger Ebert)

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