Saturday, April 16, 2005

David Denby should not be allowed to review movies anymore.


1. His review of Fight Club, whenever that was. (I'm starting with the earliest evidence first.)
2. His non-review of Fever Pitch (I'm skipping ahead). What kind of review is about seven sentences long, cites exactly three details from the film, and ends with an injunction to Red Sox fans that, now that they've descended into the "banality" of winning, they'll have to live ordinary life like the rest of us? Either the movie's worth reviewing or it's not.
3. The capsule review of The Ballad of Jack and Rose. Denby proves yet again that he should take a Tums before he reviews a movie.

Movie reviewing is, like, a sacred art. The best reviewers (currently Stuart Klawans of The Nation, David Edelstein of Slate, and maybe Glenn Kenney of Premiere, Anthony Lane when he's not being too cute to live--and to them I add Roger Ebert, whose humane reviews I find increasingly laudable) make movie-life better. And movie-life is important, man.

Denby almost always ruins my day, and has for years. I remember a great review he wrote once--of Walter Hill's Geronimo, which was a great movie--but that, my friends, was a decade or more ago. Denby needs to hang up his hat and write about something else--maybe, say, how he became addicted to online gambling? Oh, wait--he already did that.


  1. I agree with you complaint against Denby. Mostly, I don't like Denby because he's not Anthony Lane. Even when Lane is being cute, he's highly entertaining. I'm afraid my review of Closer sounded Denbyish now that I think of it. Moralistic, etc. Sometimes, boys just wanna have fun. Example: this afternoon I've been flipping back and forth between the Lakers/Dallas game and Airplane on WB. Now there's a movie! I love that Kareem Abdul Jabbar is the co-pilot.

  2. That could be your new slogan/bumper sticker: Kareem is my co-pilot. I like it!



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