James Leroy Wilson's blog

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

why roger ebert rules

World's greatest movie critic? Who knows? Greatest tv personality? He does well, even better, I think, then John Madden, another guy who isn't what you'd call "television material." But greatest newspaperman? No doubt. Pre-internet, the best 35 cents spent in the world was on the Friday Chicago Sun-Times. Now, you can get Ebert free:

"I know the 1968 movie 'The Producers' virtually by heart, and it's one of the funniest movies I've ever seen. That makes it tricky for me to review this 2005 musical version -- both because it's different, and because so often it is the same. There are stretches in Susan Stroman's opening scenes that follow Mel Brooks' 1968 version so closely it's as if Gus Van Sant, having finished his shot-by-shot remake of 'Psycho,' advanced directly to this assignment.

The new movie is a success, that I know. How much of a success, I cannot be sure. Someone who has seen the original once or twice, or never, would be a better judge. It is unfair to observe of Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick that they are not Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder, but there you have it: They're not.

There is poetic justice here. When Broderick and Lane left the Broadway and London productions and were replaced by other actors, their replacements were sniffed at in some quarters as 'the road company.' Now comes the movie, and in following Mostel and Wilder, they've become the road company."

Roger Ebert

1 comment:

  1. Very much agreed. I think his more fameous TV reviews short change his almost poetic written reviews.

    I highly recommend his review of Deuce Bigalow II from this summer...probably more laughs in his review than the film itself.