I was half way through another post when I learned about the death of Film Guru, Roger Ebert. I tossed and turned about posting my original story or listening to the rumbles in my mind to honor a personal hero.
I have admired Roger Ebert for many, many years. As a child, when the movie bug bit me, I would hang on his every word on the television program, “Siskel & Ebert”. Ebert’s diagnosis of film was gospel, in my book.As we both grew older and his life drastically changed, I admired his willingness to fight on and persevere. Despite being diagnosed with Thyroid cancer in 2002 and follow-up surgeries – through 2008 – which resulted in his inability to speak and to eat, Ebert didn’t miss a movie opening. His platform changed from television to article posts online, but his trusted voice was still heard and carried just as much weight as it always had.
Oprah Winfrey is quoted as describing the passing of Roger Ebert as the “end of an era”. I am in full agreement with that sentiment. I cannot envision anyone else who can fill his shoes at the moment. Maybe because it is too soon to tell, or simply since I am overcome with prejudicial bias.
Even President Barack Obama commented on Ebert’s passing. The president said; “Roger was the movies … [he could capture] the unique power of the movies to take us somewhere magical … The movies won’t be the same without Roger”.
Oh how right POTUS is! He has described Roger Ebert and his talent perfectly! As I read his final review, completed 2 days before his death, I was once again whisked away to “somewhere magical”.
I would like to go on a limb and declare that we would be hard-pressed to find someone like Roger Ebert again. But the wounds are still fresh and I am certain that there is similar talent in the world today, equip to fill Roger Ebert’s large and eloquent shoes. I can only hope to come close.