Roger Ebert: “Try to contribute joy to the world”

Roger Ebert, American film critic and screenwriter After surviving a disfiguring spell of thyroid cancer, legendary film critic and Pulitzer Prize-winner Roger Ebert passed away on Wednesday at age 70.

Roger Ebert wrote for the Chicago Sun-Times for 46 years and syndicated his movie reviews to more than 200 newspapers in the United States and Canada. He maintained a journal as well as a compilation of his film reviews on his website, rogerebert.suntimes.com.

As a movie enthusiast, I habitually examine Roger Ebert’s opinions for a framework to reflect on a movie’s cultural, emotional, and technical perspectives. For a sample, see his review of Yojimbo (1961, Dir: Akira Kurosawa,) one of my favorite movies.

Roger Ebert published more than a dozen books in his lifetime, including “The Great Movies,” a 100-essay appreciation of the greatest movies. Here is a quote from his poignant autobiography, “Life Itself: A Memoir.”

'Life Itself: A Memoir' by Roger Ebert, film critic I believe that if, at the end of it all, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this, and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.

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