Legendary Film Critic.
(ooc) Rest in Peace Roger Ebert
The movie created a spot of controversy last February. According to a story by Larry Carroll of MTV News, Rob Schneider took offense when Patrick Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times listed this year's Best Picture Nominees and wrote that they were "ignored, unloved and turned down flat by most of the same studios that ... bankroll hundreds of sequels, including a follow-up to 'Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo,' a film that was sadly overlooked at Oscar time because apparently nobody had the foresight to invent a category for Best Running !@#$% Joke Delivered by a Third-Rate Comic."
Schneider retaliated by attacking Goldstein in full-page ads in Daily Variety and the Hollywood Reporter. In an open letter to Goldstein, Schneider wrote: "Well, Mr. Goldstein, I decided to do some research to find out what awards you have won. I went online and found that you have won nothing. Absolutely nothing. No journalistic awards of any kind ... Maybe you didn't win a Pulitzer Prize because they haven't invented a category for Best Third-Rate, Unfunny Pompous Reporter Who's Never Been Acknowledged by His Peers."
Reading this, I was about to observe that Schneider can dish it out but he can't take it. Then I found he's not so good at dishing it out, either. I went online and found that Patrick Goldstein has won a National Headliner Award, a Los Angeles Press Club Award, a RockCritics.com award, and the Publicists' Guild award for lifetime achievement.
Schneider was nominated for a 2000 Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor, but lost to Jar-Jar Binks.
But Schneider is correct, and Patrick Goldstein has not yet won a Pulitzer Prize. Therefore, Goldstein is not qualified to complain that Columbia financed "Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo" while passing on the opportunity to participate in "Million Dollar Baby," "Ray," "The Aviator," "Sideways" and "Finding Neverland." As chance would have it, I have won the Pulitzer Prize, and so I am qualified. Speaking in my official capacity as a Pulitzer Prize winner, Mr. Schneider, your movie sucks.
That ether. That stuff that makes your soul burn slow.
Even after he said it, he immediately went back and apologized, stating that as someone who grew up in a completely different time, he really didn't have the expertise or knowledge of the medium to truly have a opinion on it, and felt he shouldn't have been so hasty in his views. However, during the controversy, his opinion really wasn't that bad, mostly stating that he felt game developers cannot give the player a true choice in how the story will go. Or something to the effect.
That said, even as someone who plays video games, I can respect his opinion on the matter. Video games as a medium has been in an odd state of existence ever since developers decided to put time and effort into creating a story both for the plot itself, and the backstory that comprises the world the game is set in. Too many people are trying to give it a legitimacy it may not truly need, as others lament the idea that the entire idea behind the medium, that of controllable, interactive entertainment for a lazy afternoon or weekend, is quickly being overtaken by an unneeded identity "culture" surrounding the very concept of it, and developers sacrificing good gameplay for "artistic vision" and defending it to the death when the game turns out to be completely horrible in all aspects, even in the story itself. I can only truly decide to say that it's ultimately up to society at large to determine whether the gaming medium can truly be considered an artform.
Having said THAT and going back on topic, I will miss Ebert. He had a certain charm and dedicated love to the cinematic medium that made his name synonymous with the epitome "film critic". He never played with childish language when he wrote scathing reviews, instead opting his mastery over the English language to fully describe what he thought was terrible about a film, and vice versa of what he thought was wonderful. He took great pride in his work, and many in and out the industry looked to him as a litmus test of sorts to see whether a movie was truly good or not. But obviously, he was not without his own faults, as opinions and tastes vary. But again, he always gave detailed, concise reasons why he loved or hated a movie, never pandering for a quick buck. He spoke his mind, and never strayed from the path, and that was why he became such a legend in American and worldwide cinematic culture.
So here's to you, Ebert. A thumbs down for your death, but a thumbs up to your legacy. May you and Siskel forever be able to watch the classics in God's Cinema.
In all seriousness, though, I will miss him - I saw a comic on Facebook today and it made me smile, it's concerning both film critics:
"I'll see you at the movies," were the last words Ebert wrote to his readers. They were published in an essay titled "Leave of Presence" on his blog Tuesday, in which he explained he was planning to slow down and reduce the number of movie reviews he wrote.
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