This Old Fanboy

Roger Ebert does not like Battle: Los Angeles:

The aliens are hilarious. Do they give Razzies for special effects? They seem to be animal/machine hybrids with automatic weapons growing from their arms, which must make it hard to change the baby. As the Marines use their combat knives to carve into the aliens, they find one layer after another of icky gelatinous pus-filled goo. Luckily, the other aliens are mostly seen in long shot, where they look like stick figures whipped up by apprentice animators.

In fact he reads it out of the sf genre, saying:

Here’s a science-fiction film that’s an insult to the words “science” and “fiction,” and the hyphen in between them.

And he knows whereof he speaks — about science, about fiction, and especially about the hyphen.  Here you see Ebert seated beside Walt Willis (lower right) in a photo from 1955 (via

[Thanks to Michael J. Walsh for the link.]

One thought on “This Old Fanboy

  1. Only once in all my years as a movie reviewer did I ever encounter Roger Ebert, but then again, he was mostly in Chicago and I was always in Los Angeles (for screenings, at least). I don’t remember what the movie was, but afterward, there was Ebert in the aisle. I was with Bill Rotsler, who went off to talk to Ebert while I went elsewhere. When I returned, I asked Bill if he’d mentioned his name to Ebert, and he hadn’t. I pointed out that Ebert would have known his name from two different directions–SF fandom and naked lady movies. Rotsler was irked with himself. I later exchanged eMails with Ebert who said that yes, he certainly wished Rotsler had made himself known to him.
    Incidentally, he’s pretty much right on the money regarding BATTLE LOS ANGELES. (The title on screen)

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