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Dear Richard Roeper,

Dear Richard Roeper,

Please quit your job. Or better yet, could someone just fire you? Unless Ebert’s coming back (which I hate to say looks unlikely despite my truest wishes to the contrary), you don’t deserve your own show. With all the “death of a film critic” pieces spreading around as of late, how come you’re the one with a TV show? I’m sure there are many, MANY people more qualified to fill your shoes… (Remember that Peter Travers vs. Lisa Schwarzbaum show on CNN five years ago? I’ll take that, even if Mr. Travers shares Mr. Roeper’s love of superlatives).

A case in point from last night’s show:

Alright, so I haven’t had the opportunity to see Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and I’m sure its good, maybe even great judging from this song and dance. But Mr. Roeper, do you really need to say things like: “instant classic” and “among my 50 favourite comedies EVER” and “I just want to get down on my knees and declare my undying love for this movie” or that it had some of the “funniest one-liners I’ve EVER heard” or that “Mila Kunis is a revelation” (there’s many other examples) all in one shot? You act like a horny school girl at the mention of Jason Segel and his nude scene.

If you need further reasoning, just give Roeper a quick historical check. In 2001, Vanilla Sky and A Beautiful Mind were in his top 5 films of the year, and three years later he threw in Steven Spielberg‘s The Terminal. The best examples are in the visuals, though. The Ebert & Roeper website offers hundreds of hours of clips (for an unrelated fun time, check out the Blue Velvet review by the original S&E). Among them is a review of Dancer in the Dark that is a classic (and entertaining) example of Roeper’s shortcomings.

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