September 17, 2007
In a recent Movie Answer Man column, Roger runs a letter from a reader asking whether there is a movie named Corpus Christi depicting Jesus Christ as a homosexual and remarking that, if such a film did exist, “it would be sad.”
It would be sad if it was a bad movie, not if it was a good one. A movie’s quality is separate from its subject.
I can’t wait to show Roger my next movie. It’s first rate: great script, great cast, great director, great cinematographer, great editor, etc. It’s about his mom, and it depicts her as a pedophile.
Can’t wait for his four-star review!
February 8, 2006
Caught another gem in one of Roger Ebert’s Sundance diaries:
You see some unexpected moviegoers at Sundance. In the audience at “The Night Listener” was Rep. Rahm Emmanuel (D-Ill.), the Democratic strategist: “We have four couples who come to the opening weekend of Sundance every year.” Did he say anything else? Only, “We’ll have another war right before the next election.” He seemed prepared to elaborate, but the lights were doing down and the ushers told us to take our seats.
Emphasis added. I would love to know what representative Emmanuel was referring to. What does he know that the rest of us don’t, and if he’s spilling the beans to Roger Ebert, shouldn’t he let the rest of us know, too?
February 8, 2006
Roger’s recent series of Sundance essays is a pretty entertaining and informative read, overall, but includes a bizzarre critique of the Minute Men, citizens who patrol the Mexican border to identify people attempting illegal immigration into the United States.
Whilst reviewing the new film Man Push Cart about a former rock and roll star from Pakistan who operates a vending cart on the streets of Manhattan, Roger had this to say:
I wish “Man Push Cart” could be seen by the Minute Men, self-anointed patriots shown in the Sundance documentary “Crossing Arizona,” who man the Mexican border with night-vision binoculars and hope to repel illegal immigrants without whom Arizona’s agricultural economy would collapse. I wonder if the Minute Men see themselves as the children of immigrants. Can they see Ahmad as an American?
I like Roger Ebert very much, but he is no stranger to moonbattery, and it never fails to mystify. The ignorance he displays in this particular excerpt is mindboggling. He reflexively conflates opposition to illegal immigration with opposition to immigration, as though there is no difference between the two. He then seems to assume that no Minute Man is capable of appreciating that every American is, somewhere down the line, the child of an immigrant. Imagine that. He then compounds the insults by suggesting that the Minute Men are bigots incapable of seeing a Pakistani man as an American. How he justifies equating opposition to illegal immigration with general xenophobia is not clear, though to be fair it might have something to do with Crossing Arizona, a documentary that Roger wrote about earlier in the festival which apparently presents the Minute Men in an unflattering light, although I get the sense based on his writing that Roger didn’t take much convincing.
Note also the sneering reference to the Minute Men as “self-anointed patriots.” I’d be curious to know how Roger defines patriotism, and furthermore what he believes is wrong with “anointing” oneself as a patriot. It seems to me that taking legal action to reinforce the security of your country is a legitimate form of patriotism, but the left often seems to sneer at this. To rely upon them, you’d think that real patriotism is defined by how aggressively one hates President Bush or sides against the United States in the world arena.
Roger Ebert’s reviews were must-reads when I was a boy. I fantasized about being a film critic, and Roger and Gene Siskel were so influential to me that I kept a scrapbook of their writings from 1980-1982. I still think he’s an excellent writer, but his politics stink.