Looking Back: Ebert’s First Review in Reader’s Digest

Jon Kopaloff/Getty ImagesMovie lovers worldwide today mourn the passing of Roger Ebert, the famed film critic who pioneered the “thumbs up, thumbs down” rating system and brought a deep affection for cinematic art to the masses. He was 70 years old and died after a long struggle with cancer.

What you may not realize, however, is that Reader’s Digest was instrumental in bringing Ebert to the masses for the first time. A short while after he started work for the Chicago Sun-Times in 1967, our magazine ran a condensed version of his very first review: Night of the Living Dead, seen below as it appeared in our June 1969 issue.

The full text is available on Ebert’s website. To read it is to experience a powerful cultural critic at the beginning of a storied career—he was in his mid-twenties at the time. Spend some time in the archive when you’re done: His words deserve to be enjoyed for decades more to come.

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Some people like to travel by train because 
it combines the slowness of a car with the cramped public exposure of 
an airplane.

Dennis Miller

I think my pilot was a little inexperienced. We were sitting on the runway, and he said, “OK, folks, we’re gonna be taking off in a just few—whoa! Here we go.”

Kevin Nealon

“I can’t wait until your vacation is over.” 
—Everyone following you on Instagram


A man knocked on my door and asked for a donation toward the local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.

Comedian Greg Davies

Funny Jokes

Just found the worst page in the entire dictionary. What I saw was disgraceful, disgusting, dishonest, and disingenuous.


Funny Jokes

Client: We need you to log in to the YouTube and make all our company videos viral.

From clientsfromhell.net

Funny Jokes

My cat just walked up to the paper shredder and said, “Teach me 
everything you know.”


Funny Jokes

“Just because you can’t dance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dance.” 

@yoyoha (Josh Hara)

Funny Jokes

My parents didn’t want to move to Florida, but they turned 60 and that’s the law.

—Jerry Seinfeld

Funny Jokes

Q: What do you call an Amish guy with his hand in a horse’s mouth?

A: A mechanic.

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