Roger Ebert has just been pronounced dead by family friends. Part of the infamous Siskel and Ebert at the Movies duo, Ebert was a life-long journalist and movie lover. Known for his sharp wit, eloquent writing and charming personality, Roger's smile and thumb will be deeply missed from the cinematic landscape.
An author, a journalist, and a teacher, Ebert was an enthusiastic film fan who passionately shared his curiosity and insight with audiences all over the world. Arguably the most prolific of critic's, Ebert had lived through Hollywood's most transformative years, and oversaw some of its most creative evolutions.
Ebert was famous for understanding each film's perspective audience, displaying an uncanny empathy in his review for their point of view, and still adding his own unique insight and interpretive weight. After suffering post surgical complications related to thyroid cancer, Ebert lost his ability to speak and left his show in 2006. But he re-appeared again to share his love of cinema with his final show in 2009 — Ebert Presents: At the Movies.
With the death of a great, comes a reflection on the industry he transformed. The post-Ebert world is one where critic's reviews are aggregated into communal marketing sites. A world where social networks make sharing your taste with friends instant and comprehensive. Before we all became self proclaimed movie lovers and fans, Roger was among the first to devote his whole life to the magic of cinema, and celebrate the joys and tragedies they inspired us to feel.
Over the decades, Ebert has compiled a list of what he believes to be each year's best film. To celebrate the man's good taste, here are his top choices:
1967: Bonnie and Clyde 1968: The Battle of Algiers 1969: Z 1970: Five Easy Pieces 1971: The Last Picture Show 1972: The Godfather 1973: Cries and Whispers 1974: Scenes from a Marriage 1975: Nashville 1976: Small Change 1977: 3 Women 1978: An Unmarried Woman 1979: Apocalypse Now 1980: The Black Stallion 1981: My Dinner with Andre
1982: Sophie's Choice 1983: The Right Stuff 1984: Amadeus 1985: The Color Purple 1986: Platoon 1987: House of Games 1988: Mississippi Burning 1989: Do the Right Thing 1990: Goodfellas 1991: JFK 1992: Malcolm X 1993: Schindler's List 1994: Hoop Dreams 1995: Leaving Las Vegas 1996: Fargo
1997: Eve's Bayou 1998: Dark City 1999: Being John Malkovich 2000: Almost Famous 2001: Monster's Ball 2002: Minority Report 2003: Monster 2004: Million Dollar Baby 2005: Crash 2006: Pan's Labyrinth 2007: Juno 2008: Synecdoche, New York 2009: The Hurt Locker 2010: The Social Network 2011: A Separation 2012: Argo