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"Ordet" reviewed by Ebert

stills from Ordet

For several years, I've been trying to persuade friends who care about movies to watch Carl Th. Dreyer's Ordet, surely one of my top-5 favorites. However, I've also had to warn them to be careful to read nothing online about it, which doesn't help the case to check out an obscure foreign film from 1954. Finally, Roger Ebert has written a review this movie truly deserves--he interestingly avoids criticism or any discussion of where the plot heads (which ruins it, in so many books and articles) and simply describes the experience of watching it, only up to the point that's necessary to convince you that it's worth seeing. They ought to give him another Pulitzer for casting some more attention on this film.

As much as I enjoy reading Ebert (if not for his actual recommendations all the time), I'm sad to learn that my favorite film critic Jonathan Rosenbaum has retired. If you're unfamiliar, there's a nice list of selected reviews and a YouTube interview with him here, courtesy of the Chicago Reader. I credit him with greatly influencing my taste and will miss his film writing very much--though hopefully this will pave the way for new great works from him.