Roger Ebert is a national treasure. He is the most recognizable and well known movie critic. He has been my favorite writer for some time now. I do not always agree with his opinions, which is my right, but he always backs them up. He is not someone who will say that such and such about movie X is bad and leave it at that – he will give the reasons for his thought process.
His writing is easy to read. He is a man who enjoys high art, low art, and everything in between. If it stinks, he will tell you. If it stinks, but has redeeming qualities, he will tell you. If it is great, his enthusiasm is infectious. He understands what it is like to be a fan of the movies, not just a critic who has become jaded and cynical over the years.
Ebert has become a fixture of the Chicago Sun-Times, as well as a beloved television personality. Siskel & Ebert brought him to the national stage. A few years back, Roger was diagnosed with salivary cancer. He underwent surgery and never missed a beat, or a show, or a review. He pulled through and was doing fine.
Earlier this year, June to be exact, there was a reappearance of the cancer which required further surgery. It was expected that he would miss little time and be back to what he loves, and what he is loved for. Sadly, that was not to be.
While Roger was recovering from that surgery, there was some major bleeding which required further, and more critical, surgery. That has kept him out of action since June.
The good news is that Roger is recovering, and is expected to be back on a fulltime basis early next year. He announced the good word in a wonderful letter to his fans on his website. In the letter he speaks of how much he loves film, how thankful he is to his friends, fans, and especially his wife for their support. He also speaks of how he has very few memories of July and August due to the sedation he was under.
It is a fantastic address to the public, and brought a smile to my face. I do not know him, but I feel I have come to know him through his writing and his television show. I welcome him into my home, I welcome his words into my thoughts. I respect him, and his opinions of film.
When I received the weekly email from RogerEbert.com I was shocked. The mailer had not gone out since he had the surgery, as he had not been writing. This could only mean one thing, he was writing again! He has posted two new reviews, The Queen and Infamous.
Welcome back, Roger. I wish you the best in your continued rehabilitation. Come back soon!