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June 20, 2012

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David Ehrenstein

Very deeply saddened. A marvelous film critic and a very nice man.

Robert

There were critics who got more attention (Kael, Ebert, Farber) but none really had Sarris' influence when it came to changing how American audiences thought about movies.

lipranzer

I have to admit I was more inclined towards Kael than Sarris, but there's no denying he was, in addition to everything else, a very good writer.

bstrong

What Mr. Ehrenstein said. He was as intelligent and approachable in person as he was in prose.

Hawksian

I received a call from a friend recently telling me to be ready for this but it doesn't make it any easier to hear.

Bruce Reid

The time and place I grew up, I had to read about many more films than I had the opportunity to actually see. So many of the films I fell in love with were, for years, only descriptions on the page, a high-contrast still or two, and the passion of a writer convincing me I had to track this down somehow. Two of the great, tantalizing tomes I pored over were The American Cinema and Film as a Subversive Art. It's been a hell of a year.

Petey

Petey's Auteur Theory:

In 400 years, due to gaps in the historical record, a robust debate will have broken out about who REALLY directed Hitchcock's movies.

While the majority of scholarship will insist that Hitchcock indeed was the director, a minority will dissent that a hammy actor like Hitchcock, (many of the Alfred Hitchcock Presents TV shows will have survived), not to mention the son of a greengrocer, could not have actually been responsible for the great films.

Among the dissenters, the two main factions will divide between those who believe that Jean-Luc Godard was the REAL director, and those who believe it was Andrew Sarris.

Chris L.

A singular voice of wisdom, dignity and good humor. Sorely to be missed.

From what a distant outsider could glean, the "great rivalry" always seemed a bit one-sided in Sarris' favor. But one would have had to be there to appreciate fully. At times like this, I wish I had been.

David Ehrenstein

What was one-sided about it was the fact that Pauline wouldn't admit to being an auteurist herself. She just liked different auteurs: Huston instead of Hawks and Brian DePalma instead of almost everyone.

Pete Segall

All I'd like to add is that in the brief and very limited capacity that I knew him in a professional setting 12 or 13 years ago, he was unfailingly kind and warm. It did not take him long to convey a sense of caring - and this was a setting where it certainly wasn't necessary on his part to do so.

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