Jonathan Poritsky

Todd McCarthy, Welcome to the Ether

Just wanted to jot down a few quick thoughts on Todd McCarthy’s recent announce­ment that he is join­ing the indieWIRE blog net­work. As you may recall, Todd lost his job as Variety’s chief film critic the day after the Oscars this year. As a result, the press exploded with opin­ions on the death of film crit­i­cism, with the usual cul­prit being the online blogger/critic. Now, Todd has found a home online, the very land that sup­pos­edly caused his undoing.

Bet you idiots feel pretty stu­pid now.

There really is no bet­ter fit for Mr. McCarthy than indieWIRE, a net­work that has defined and rede­fined the online cin­ema magazine/trade pub­li­ca­tion time and time again. The real loser here is Variety, who has taken nearly every mis­step pos­si­ble in the age of inter­net jour­nal­ism. Their pay wall will even­tu­ally be their undo­ing, but by lit­er­ally hand­ing their golden boy to the free com­pe­ti­tion, Variety seems to have put the nail in their own coffin.

Mainly, I would like to say wel­come, Todd; the ‘net is happy to have you. I have no doubt that you will enjoy an online career as excit­ing as Roger Ebert or David Bordwell. Film jour­nal­ism, and espe­cially crit­i­cism, is not dead but alive and well online. If ever we see a weak­en­ing in the art of film writ­ing, we can only blame our­selves. The inter­net has noth­ing to do with it.

(If you’ve been won­der­ing where I am, all my film writ­ing is at the can­dler blog, but you can also see my work pep­pered on Greencine Guru, Heeb Magazine, and NachosNY.)

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