It took two evenings for my 88 year old grand-mother-in-law and I to watch Martin Scorsese’s brilliant documentary of the entire life and times about Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and film critic Roger Ebert. What an honor it was to sit with the woman who left Kansas when she was 15 in 1940, found herself in San Diego and married the man of her dreams who was then a machinist making planes for the war machine being built at that time, He was later drafted to the Philippines, before he returned and conceived their four children between 1949 and 1957. She’s seen almost an entire century unfold and change before her eyes. I the daughter-in-law, a bit too old to be a baby-boomer, at 70 whom some call an aging hippie, felt honored to witness this two-hour piece of history with her. I’m surprised this film didn’t win Best Documentary at the Academy Awards. A former college health educator, and hospice volunteer, the expanse and depth with which it showed both living and dying was amazing.
Not for the feeble hearted or the lazy-minded, LIFE ITSELF ends, as all of ours will, with Ebert’s wife and family “letting him go,” after years of giving him the extra-ordinary care, both at home and in-hospital that his extended throat cancer needed. His voice, whether activated by computer Stephen Hawking style, or in blogs he wrote till his last days, rang through loud and clear.
Two thumbs up! It’s on Amazon Prime … GO!