Richard Schickel 1933-2017



I loved reading Schickel just for sheer the fact that he was part of a dying breed of maverick film critics from '60s that had an abundance of knowledge about the craft and could run circles on just about any online "critic". I figured I could learn quite a bit from this top-tier intellect. We will likely never see his kind again. He was part of the movement that led to Pauline Kael, Andrew Sarris, Rex Reed, Joe Morgenstern, Stanley Kauffman and many more that ended up covering the breathless period of American cinema between 1967-1979. 

The death of Schickel is just another nail in the coffin for American film criticism. I remember, even more recently, I used to have a handful of critics I would look forward to reading every week (Ebert, Schwarzbaum, Kenny, Schickel, Ansen) but that list has diminished to next to nothing. If anything what Schickel shaed with all the critics mentioned in this post is the way he could articulate a movie you had already seen in ways that would make it seem new and fresh. I highly recommend his doc series The Men Who Made The Movies, essential for any cinephile. Ditto any of his books, but especially "Converations with Scorsese." I can't help but be saddened by this passing as, just like with Ebert's death, it signifies the end of something.
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