Roger Ebert died one year ago today, on April 4, 2013. It is hard to put into words the influence this wonderful man has had on my life. His views on politics, religion, culture and really, life itself have had a profound impact on the evolution of my own perspectives. I was enthralled reading his reviews; I read every one that I could, whether I was interested in the movie or not. I still remember the excitement I felt when I realized that his blog would become a way to know his thoughts on an ever-expanding array of topics.
When I read Ebert’s words, I can often feel myself growing in wisdom and compassion. I feel that reading Ebert taught me things that I could only have hoped to have learned by the end of my life. To know these things now and use them to inform my daily life as I live it out is a gift.
I know that many reading this will think it odd to feel such affection for a man I never even met. Indeed, it may be odd. But Roger Ebert opened up new worlds of thought and ways of processing emotion to me that continue to inform my worldview today. His emphasis on kindness, optimism, compassion, and honesty creates a standard that I often fall short of, yet always strive to reach.
With that, I offer you a collection of some of my favorite writings by Roger Ebert:
From Roger Ebert’s Journal:
- How I Believe in God
- Nil by Mouth
- I’m safe on board. Pull up the life rope.
- My Name is Roger, and I’m an Alcoholic
- BP’s tree fell on my lawn
- Sign the Social Contract
- Ten Things I Know About the Mosque
- “Death Panels.” A Most Excellent Term.
Reviews (in no particular order):
- Dark City
- Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
- The Last Temptation of Christ
- Au Revoir Les Enfants
- Hoop Dreams
- The Gospel According to St. Matthew
- The Shining
Roger Ebert Defending a Film at Sundance:
TL;DR: Roger Ebert is one of America’s most important writers. I miss him.