Falling Star: An Editorial
June 29, 2011
When I moved to Kansas City at the beginning of last year, I was excited for many reasons. One of which was that my film idol lives here. I know what you're thinking, "what movie star could that possibly be?" He is not a movie star; he is Robert W. Butler, Kansas City Star film critic extraordinaire. My husband, a KC native and fellow film student, introduced me to his column when we were first dating, and I have loved both of them ever since.
Last week, I goggled Mr. Butler to find out what my guru thought of Cars 2 and discovered that the Kansas City Star laid him off at the end of May. Who could have possibly thought it was a good idea to lay off the most brilliant film critic currently in print??? Although I do not know the reasons behind the Star's decision, I can say that I am indignantly upset.
Mr. Butler is taking this news better than I am. He is not withholding his fascinating thoughts from the world, and we can all still enjoy his writing online. The 'About' section of his new blog states, "Robert W. Butler for 41 years reviewed films for the Kansas City Star. In May 2011, he was downsized... He couldn't take the hint." He recently started a twitter account which I follow diligently (You can follow him too: @ButlerFilm), and a Wordpress blog, Butler's Cinema Scene, which is better than his column because he is unedited by "The Man".
Here are a few of my favorite Butler review quotes for films you may borrow here at the library:
Pride and Prejudice (2005) - "Moment for moment, I derived more pure pleasure from this Pride & Prejudice than any other movie I've seen this year. It is nearly perfect." As a loyal Colin Firth fan, this is one I would not have seen had it not been for his review and I am so thankful.
The Fighter (2010) - "Don't like boxing movies? No problem. The Fighter isn't like any other boxing movie you've seen." Also, one I was hesitant to see...I'm not much for sweat or blood, but this was excellent.
The King's Speech (2010) - "Against the odds, The King's Speech is a triumph, a laugh-until-you-cry, cry-until-you-laugh emotional roller coaster." I wanted to see this regardless, but I love his wordplay here.
The Tourist (2010) - "The Tourist is memorable for one thing, at least. It's the first movie to make Venice look boring." I still haven't been able to bring myself to see this one, though I'm oh-so-curious.
You can read more snippets of his earlier reviews on Rotten Tomatoes (if you are not yet acquainted with this site get ready to be happy).
Live long and prosper Bob! I know you will. I'm so glad I don't have to miss you because you're still here on our great web with your good words.
Stefanie E. (aka The Reel Sassy Critic)
North Oak Branch