Roger Ebert’s 5 Most Badass Moments
Roger Ebert may have given Space Jam 3 out of 4 stars, he may have declared JFK the best film of 1991, he may be responsible for the atrocious cult classic Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, and he may have worshiped the once-important, now-irrelevant Werner Herzog, but with insults like these below, how can you possibly dismiss the man entirely?
Here are 5 examples of the man’s best insults (ranked in no particular order):
# 1 Rob Schneider (Yeah, that guy)
In 2005, a critic panned the sequel to Deuce Bigalow, to which Rob Schneider dismissed on the grounds that the critic’s commentary was worthless since he has never won a Pulitzer. Ebert intervened, stating in his review of the film: "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."
#2 Vincent Gallo, Douche Bag Extraordinaire
In 2003, Ebert remarked that Vincent Gallo’s film Brown Bunny was the worst film to ever screen at the Cannes Film Festival (“I had a colonoscopy once, and they let me watch it on TV. It was more entertaining than The Brown Bunny.”). Gallo retaliated, saying that Ebert was nothing more than a “fat pig with the physique of a slave trader.” Gallo then went on to wish cancer upon Ebert. His response to Gallo?
#3 Where’s a Deceptacon When You Need One?
In his review for the Transformers sequel, Ebert described the film thusly: "If you want to save yourself the ticket price, go into the kitchen, cue up a male choir singing the music of hell, and get a kid to start banging pots and pans together. Then close your eyes and use your imagination."
#4 Roger Ebert, 1; Bam Margera, 0; Ryan Dunn, Dead
In 2011, MTV reality star Ryan Dunn, most known for his appearances on Jackass (and its films) and Bam Margera’s Viva la Bam, died in a horrific car accident after a long night of drinking. The following night, Ebert took to Twitter: "Friends don’t let Jackasses drive drunk."
Margera, of course, wasn’t too pleased and Tweeted a reply: “I just lost my best friend, I have been crying hysterical for a full day and piece of shit roger ebert has the gall to put in his 2 cents about a jackass drunk driving, fuck you! Millions of people are crying right now, shut your fat fucking mouth!”
Ebert apologized, even though he said exactly what everyone was thinking. Millions of people, Bam? Really? Death or not, drinking and driving is kind of a shitty thing to do, don’t you think?
I’m sorry, but Ebert was right. Fuck Ryan Dunn.
#5 The Greatest Moment In the History of Film Festivals
In 2002, Ebert attended a screening of Justin Lin’s new film Better Luck Tomorrow at the Sundance Film Festival. During a Q&A session that followed the showing of the film, an audience member attacked the film and its director: ”You know how to make a movie, but why with the talent up there and yourself, make a film as so empty and amoral for Asian-Americans and for Americans?”
Ebert didn’t take this shit lightly. He rose from his seat and defended the filmmaker and his film against the—let’s face it—white supremacist who thought he should decided what “represents” Asian-American culture:
"What I find very offensive and condescending about your statement is nobody would say to a bunch of white filmmakers, ‘How could you do this to your people?’ […] This film has the right to be about these people, and Asian-American characters have the right to be whatever the hell they want to be. They do not have to represent their people.”
On his final blog post (dated April 2), the legendary film critic concluded the entry: ”So on this day of reflection I say again, thank you for going on this journey with me. I’ll see you at the movies.”
And in the words of blogger Jonathan Dekel: "Rest in peace, Roger. You deserve it."
I couldn’t agree more. So it goes.