Davis: Tribute to critic Roger Ebert

Most people can agree on Roger Ebert’s influence on the movie industry and that there will never be a film critic like him.

Whether or not you agreed with his reviews, most people can agree on Roger Ebert’s influence on the movie industry and that there will never be a film critic like him ever again.

He was the first movie critic to receive a Pulitzer Prize and the only one to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

He was arguably unsuccessful as a screenwriter with Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, but even that movie has become a cult hit.

Because of his opinion as a critic and film historian, he was asked to provide DVD commentaries on movies like Citizen Kane and Dark City. His love of Dark City turned that movie from a box office bomb into a modern classic, not only in the sci-fi genre, but in all genres. In the Internet era with infinite movie-related websites where everyone can be a film critic, we will likely not see anyone with as much influence as Ebert had.

On the topic of influence, the story of two of the most groundbreaking figures in sports is told in 42.

In 1946, Brooklyn Dodgers GM Branch Rickey made history when he signed Jackie Robinson to the team, breaking Major League Baseball’s infamous colour line.

Referring to Robinson’s jersey number, 42 shows the negative reaction and racism from the public, the press and the other players and how Robinson was forced to demonstrate tremendous courage and restraint to not react to the hatred but rather let his talent on the field win over the critics.

42 stars Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey and Chadwick Boseman as Robinson and is written and directed by Brian Helgeland, best known for writing L.A. Confidential and Mystic River and writing and directing A Knight’s Tale.

Hot on the heels of last weekend’s success of the Evil Dead remake, Scary Movie 5 is unleashed on the world. The previous Scary Movies served as spoofs of recent hit movies and this one is no exception sending up movies like Paranormal Activity, Mama, Sinister, Inception and the aforementioned Evil Dead.

Anna Faris, who starred in the previous four instalments, is replaced by Ashley Tisdale (High School Musical) and the cast includes Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, Snoop Dogg, Katt Williams, Molly Shannon, Terry Crews, Jerry O’Connell, Heather Locklear and Mike Tyson. Directed by Malcolm Lee (Undercover Brother, Soul Men and Spike Lee’s cousin) it is written and produced by David Zucker, who not only directed the previous two instalments, he contributed to the success of similar movies like Airplane!, Top Secret! and The Naked Gun.

The director of Blue Valentine has not only re-teamed with Ryan Gosling, but has assembled a powerhouse cast including Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes and Ray Liotta for his latest called The Place Beyond the Pines.

This critically acclaimed crime-drama is about a motorcycle stunt rider whose moonlighting as a bank robber brings him into conflict with an ambitious young cop.