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(piano music)
- I have a place in Michigan
that has a big, long dining room table,
and I was thinking of getting all of the chairs on one side
to have only a right arm,
and all the chairs on the other side
to have only a left arm,
see, so that all of the guests, as they recline,
would have to look at me.
(laughter)
I decided not to go ahead with this,
although I felt that it would add a great deal to my
legend for eccentricity.
(piano music)
Jesus, when I was 16, I felt it was my business to find out
what was going on before I was born.
I mean, who wants to live in the present,
it's such a limiting period, compared to the past.
When i was a teenager, we went to the movies to see
what adults did.
Now, adults go to the movies to see what teenagers do.
You know, people over the age of 21 hardly ever make love
in the movies anymore, it seems like.
They just look around, they sit around and
tell the kids they shouldn't be doing it, it's amazing.
(piano plays)
What am I looking for, I'm looking for
films that come out of a director's quixotic,
personal, passionate imagination,
and not films that are manufactured to
entertain large numbers of people efficiently,
even though I'm often among those entertained.
I love to be entertained, I love those films,
but the ones that really move me are the ones
where a director felt that something had to be said,
and he said it.
Film school used to have the values
of the liberal arts schools, now film schools are
more allied to the business schools,
in terms of their values.
Success, money, achievement, and power,
rather than, vision, imagination, truth,
and social change.
(piano music)
I love the acknowledgement
in Say Anything, a very underrated movie.
The fact that John Cusack loves
the girl in that movie
because she's smart and not because she's pretty.
Almost always, my favorite love scenes in movies
don't involve passion, they involve
nobility or sacrifice,
when somebody brings out the better side
or the better nature of somebody else.
- [Voiceover] Can criticism be constructive or destructive,
or it can only be good and bad criticism?
- Bad criticism, you see, could be just as constructive
or destructive as good.
I, generally, believe that
a certain amount of tact is necessary.
I don't think I would mention Streisand's nose in print,
any more than I would mention it to her in person.
I, generally, feel that (drums play)
what makes people interesting
is the spirit that shines through.
Although, of course, in the movies you tend to have
attractive-looking people,
one attractive person is compellingly likeable,
and another one leaves you completely cold,
and that's more a question of spirit than of flush.
(instrumental music)
- [Voiceover] Who has the biggest ego
that you've ever dealt with in the movies,
being you the director or actor?
- Well, you see, is it a healthy ego or a sick ego
that we're talking about?
When you say, "Who has the biggest ego?,"
there's an implicit criticism, in other words,
you're actually asking, "Who's the biggest (bleep)?"
- [Voiceover] Not necessarily. - [Roger Ebert] I would say
that the biggest ego
of anyone I spoke to in the movies
belonged to Ingmar Bergman,
but I wouldn't want that to hurt his praise.
He has a very highly developed sense of self,
and of who he is and what he thinks,
and what he cares about.
Woody Allen has an extremely well-developed
and healthy ego.
This does not mean he's conceited,
it doesn't mean he's insufferable.
It just means that he takes himself seriously,
and he should.
(instrumental music)
I have innate confidence in the fact that I'm right,
I just assume I'm right,
partially out of conviction, and partially as a pose.
(instrumental music)
Episodic television is based upon giving you,
more or less, the same thing every week,
so that's why you would tune in again.
Life is too short to watch the same thing more than once,
unless it's really worth seeing more than once.
- [Voiceover] Well, not everybody
knows what to do with their lives.
That's their entertainment.
- Well, you know, it's too bad.
There are a lot of other things to do.
You can play poker,
you can cook, you can paint, you can draw,
you can read, you can have animals,
you can have a girlfriend, you can
go to the theatre, you can travel,
gather together friends, cook food and eat it together,
then talk afterwards,
sure beats television.
(instrumental music)
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Roger Ebert on Ego | Blank on Blank | PBS Digital Studios

100 Folder Collection
VoiceTube published on September 20, 2016
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