“Movies can be about anything. So can our reviews.”
Recently, an incredible presence of an important person to all of us is no longer here. Maybe you’ve heard about it, maybe you don’t care, or maybe you were as devastated as I was when you heard the bad news. This whole affair has been very personal to me as it has had a great impact on my life. That presence was Roger Ebert, and, on April 4th, 2013, he passed away.
You might be thinking why this is being talked about on a video game website as he was a film critic. You might also be thinking about how he once said video games can’t be art, even though he eventually backed out of that argument, making this more out of place if that’s really the only thing he has to do with video games.
Well, when we get down to it, if it wasn’t for Roger Ebert, none of us would be in this position right now. If it wasn’t for Roger Ebert, this website might not even exist in the first place. All of the websites that serve to have serious discussions over a particular medium, whether it be games, movies, books, or anything with artistic value have Roger Ebert to thank.
Roger Ebert has made a serious impact on art itself by showing that it’s vital that we have these serious discussions. With his show, At the Movies, which also starred Gene Siskel(who is also, sadly, no longer with us), he didn’t just show how vital critiques were, he also popularized it as he made these critiques entertaining, making these serious discussions accessible to everybody.
This doesn’t just involve film, but it involves all art-forms, including video games. Because of Roger Ebert, knowledge that would have only been reserved for people who received training in special schools can now be accessible to everybody in such a way where people strive to learn more. Shows like Extra Credits, something that thrives on teaching its audience on a wide scale rather than just specifically for game designers, probably wouldn’t have even existed if it wasn’t for Ebert. The reviews that you read, all of the critics you like, and all of those serious discussions you like to have wouldn’t be as prevalent if it wasn’t for Roger Ebert.
What Roger Ebert has done makes him one of the most important people to ever live, especially when it comes to people like us who are all about having serious discussions on a website like this.
So, Roger Ebert…
Thank you for all you have done!
“…I think both the left and the right should celebrate people who have different opinions, and disagree with them, and argue with them, and differ with them, but don’t just try to shut them up.”