Smokey “The” Bear
Things No One Will Ever Do Again: Work 20 Years In One Place

1500 movies later

After watching about 1,500 movies in my life – about half of which I reviewed in public – I was moved by classical music critic Joshua Kossman‘s farewell column in the San Francisco Chronicle, in which he says it’s just talking if you say whether or not you like a work of art; it is reviewing when you say why.

 One of the things I’ve struggled with for 55 years is the fact that I always know how the movie made me feel, but often don’t know why. I have the same problem in my book reviews. Why is one great and another just adequate? Like Justice Potter, I know it when I see it even if I can’t define it. Which means that at best I’m a three star reviewer. Or, for Chronicle readers, the little man is sitting in his chair.


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