When I was a kid, Siskel and Ebert was one of the only venues for intelligent discourse on TV. In the time Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel reviewed a few movies during their program, they also talked about life, philosophy, race–pretty much everything at some point or another. After Gene Siskel’s death in 1999, Ebert, along with his wife Chaz, really worked at maintaining that tradition in a market that didn’t quite value ideas the way it used to. Movie reviews may have been the venue in which Ebert was most appreciated, but he thrived as a passionate communicator of ideas whether his words were spoken in his own voice or typed up for a page or for a screen. He may have lost his jaw, but for a number of years right up until his death yesterday, his thoughts were communicated as clearly and as vibrantly as ever. The world has lost quite a voice in that regard, and few writers will have a voice that echoes as much — and continues to, I hope.
The second post I wrote on this blog was a reaction to the documentary film “The Interrupters” and Ebert’s specific review of it. I also quoted him — and, before that particular entry, him in a dialogue with Gene Siskel — in the following posts: