Thursday, August 10, 2006

For Roger Ebert

As you may have heard by now, film critic Roger Ebert ( has been unwell and is currently recuperating from surgery. His wife has been providing updates on his progress on his website. Last week, Jay Leno subbed for Ebert on his show Ebert and Roeper. Leno was solid, but it was not the same, of course.

What does Roger Ebert have to do with this blog? Well, in short, no Roger Ebert, no Asian-American Poetry blog. Much of the "voice" of this blog has been shaped by Ebert's print and television reviews. I started reading Ebert's print reviews and watching Siskel and Ebert when I was about twelve or thirteen, and it has had a profound influence on my writing style as well as way of conceiving and viewing the world. His critical voice is impossible to emulate. Lots of film reviews are good, but he takes it to that difficult-to-define next level of brilliance. His film reviews always manage to hit such a wide range of notes -- informative, funny, tender, sarcastic, sophisticated, personal, charming, serious, and entertaining. Understandably, I have looked up to him. As someone whose writing style is constantly evolving, I think that I have chosen a good role model. Get well soon, Roger! You are definitely missed.


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