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Topic: John Simon (critic)

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In the News (Sun 17 Feb 19)

  Critic John Simon keeps dishing it out - Dateline Florida
John Simon is best known to some readers as the theater critic who focuses as much on an actor's physical appearance as on acting ability.
For 37 years, Simon was the imposing and tenacious theater critic for New York magazine until he was unceremoniously "retired" two years ago.
Simon has clear views on what critics should be but wonders if enough people have what it takes, so he has created a type of rating system.
www.heraldtribune.com /apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070304/COLUMNIST26/703040960   (686 words)

  John Simon (critic) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
John Simon (born Ivan Simon on May 12, 1925, in Subotica, Serbia, in what would later become Yugoslavia) is a Serbian-American author and literary, theater, and film critic.
Simon was theater critic at New York magazine for more than 36 years, from October 1968 until he was fired in May 2005.
Simon has attracted a great deal of unpopular attention in the Broadway community for his habit of speaking aloud from the audience during performances.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/John_Simon_(critic)   (639 words)

 Something Old, Nothing New: Simonized
Playbill's recap of the career of John Simon, on the occasion of his dumpage from New York magazine (and his replacement by a writer 52 years younger) is pretty funny.
Simon's theatre reviews have dated badly because they're all about him; unlike, say, Walter Kerr, who had an idea of what he wanted theatre to be (a controversially show-bizzy, commercial idea, but an idea), Simon didn't seem to have any particular ideas about theatre other than that he likes good plays better than bad ones.
He was about the worst movie critic of his era, though, a walking self-parody of the type of movie "fan" that sprung up in the late '50s and early '60s, the type who didn't actually like movies but liked the possibility of what movies could become if they could be turned into Art.
zvbxrpl.blogspot.com /2005/05/simonized.html   (277 words)

 Salon Directory   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-05)
Simon's behavior was particularly galling coming after Egoyan had spoken of what the play had meant to him for so long, and especially after watching the fine job he has done of filming it.
Critics often have to be tough not just toward meretricious work but toward decent people who've done the best they can and fallen short.
They are a temptation that all critics have at one time or another succumbed to, out of either anger or frustration, meanness or laziness, and they never serve either the writer or the subject at hand.
dir.salon.com /ent/movies/feature/2000/09/26/simon   (708 words)

 deseretnews.com | It's curtains for 'most poisonous pen' in N.Y.
Theater critic John Simon, famed and feared over four decades for his slashing pen, has been handed his walking papers by New York magazine — three days shy of his 80th birthday — amid a volley of kind words from the editor who let him go.
Simon, who can be found in the May 9 issue heaping contempt upon a "degrading, detestable" production of "A Streetcar Named Desire" and warning of "rotary earthquakes" near the grave of Marlon Brando, brushed his employer's praise aside.
Simon was born in Yugoslavia, came to the United States during World War II and was educated at Harvard.
deseretnews.com /dn/view/0,1249,600133686,00.html   (488 words)

 John Simon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
John Allsebrook Simon, 1st Viscount Simon, Lord Chancellor of Great Britain 1940–45;
John Simon, the author and literary, film and drama critic;
John Simon, record producer for Columbia Records; or
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/John_Simon   (125 words)

 Playbill News: John Simon to Leave Long-Held Post at New York Magazine; McCarter Named New Critic
Simon is known equally for his considerable erudition, his longevity as a critic (he is 79) and his vituperative style.
Simon, who was born in 1925 in the former Yugoslavia, and never lost his Eastern European accent, was educated at Harvard.
Simon's reputation as an aggressive drama critic, with a tendency for acerbity, was forged early on.
www.playbill.com /news/article/92861.html   (682 words)

I remind Simon that a critic might not be a man at all.
Simon is unable to detect a connection between this murder and the scenes of conversation and polemic.
The question Simon's provocation poses -- the question of the relationship between Mindy's strangling of Raimondo and the plot involving Aunt Dan and Lemon -- could be clarified by asking whether the play repeats this structure of seduction.
www.hotreview.org /articles/crritic.htm   (1389 words)

 Opera News > The Met Opera Guild
Most criticism in the theater and in music, too, is so mild, so unaggressive and so namby-pamby, and because most of those [who write it] don't have a sense of the background, the personality, or the Balkan tradition behind them, they're not very sharp, not very tough, not very critical.
So yes, the critics may be behind the times in that they don't go into ecstasies over the latest hit play, but I think that is their great virtue.
If you, John Simon, go to the theater or opera, and you're prejudiced against fat women and you could never like a fat woman in a role you consider unsuitable, you're closing off a part of yourself that could never be surprised by that.
www.metoperafamily.org /operanews/world/simon.aspx   (3037 words)

 FDU Press Release: Arts Critic John Simon to Appear in Literary Society Lecture
A celebrated theater, film and music critic, he has long been noted for his acid tongue and stinging style, earning the title “Count Dracula of Shubert Alley.” Simon’s intelligent and eloquent reviews were often provocative.
He is the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, including the George Polk Award in film criticism, the George Jean Nathan Award for drama criticism and an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
John Simon was born in Serbia and educated at Harvard, earning his bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees at that institution.
inside.fdu.edu /prpt/johnsimon.html   (353 words)

 John Clark Pro Se Blog: John Simon, Theatre Critic, still alive
I do believe that John Simon, an icon among reviewers, represents what theatre criticism is and should be about; the theatre's values and standards, and the two should not be confused.
Simon did not compromise his measure of what constitutes good theatre, and one always had the feeling that if the show lacked standards, he got angry, and said so in a way that hurt the offender by letting the air out of inflated egos as a form of contempt.
So to John Simon, who is a little older than me but occupies the same decade of life, I say don't go away, the theatre needs you more than ever.
www.johnclarkprose.com /commentary-john-simon-theatre-critic-still-alive.html   (864 words)

 +++ neumu [ the drama you've been craving ]
The other day, I found myself at odds with John Doe, the co-founder of the great punk quartet X. John Doe, back in the days when X was young and tearin' down the walls...
The other day, I found myself at odds with John Doe, the co-founder of the great punk quartet X. Somehow the two of us, along with British academic and journalist Simon Warner, had been picked to judge the "Music Criticism" category of the annual Association of Alternative Newsweeklies editorial contest.
And so, here I was, lightly arguing via email with John Doe (Warner and I seemed to agree on things a bit more easily).
neumu.net /drama   (1438 words)

 Books : Simon Rattles : Critic John Simon eviscerates and elucidates with erudition :: The Cleveland Free Times :: ...
IT’S A SAD, INFURIATING and final indication of just how grudging respect for John Simon has always been that he was summarily dumped this past spring by New York, a magazine he’d served as theater critic and main distinction for nearly four decades.
While the compilation includes less than half of the critic’s thousand-plus theater pieces written from 1974 to 2003, what emerges from either a cursory or more probative reading is an irrefutable confirmation of superior critical qualities in unique combination that far outweigh any real or reputed shortcomings.
Simon’s main strengths are a felicitous writing style, an unmatched erudition, a dedication to judging art in aesthetic historical context, and — most characteristically — the unwavering courage to state his considered opinions undiluted and unmitigated.
www.freetimes.com /modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=2895   (700 words)

 The Harvard Crimson :: Arts :: Simon Says He’s Proudly an Elitist
Simon left his native Yugoslavia as a boy, exploring theater during grade school in England and the United States.
Simon also took a stab at criticism, reviewing theater for the Harvard Advocate—back in the days when the Advocate actually published.
Simon’s justice is no longer of the here and now, a fact he embraces with unwavering pessimism.
www.thecrimson.com /article.aspx?ref=510652   (894 words)

 There Goes Whinin’ Simon : Gawker
John Simon, New York magazine’s lead theater critic lo these 37 1/2 years, got the boot from editor Adam Moss yesterday.
Simon told BOLDFACE that Moss intends to take theater coverage in a “new direction”—which, judging by the magazine’s other bold new initiatives, presumably means intensive coverage of one-woman shows involving teen overspending and the psychosexual implications of rapid weight loss.
To be sure, Simon, who never seems to have met a racial minority or gay agenda he liked, will be unmourned in much of the theater community: Playwright and neophyte Huffablogger David Mamet famously remarked that Simon and former Times theater scribe Frank Rich were the syphilis and gonorrhea of the theater world.
www.gawker.com /news/media/new-york-magazine/there-goes-whinin-simon-102923.php   (179 words)

 The Corsair
John Kerry's presidential campaign is shaping up to be the biggest natural disaster since Al Gore.
Now, John Simon, the ultrasnarky New York Magazine theater critic, has some, sort of, nice things, to say about P Diddy's performance in Raisin in the Sun:
Simon, he alleged, was biased against him: Mailer had apparently described Simon years ago as being 'as predictable in his critical reactions as a headwaiter.'"
ronmwangaguhunga.blogspot.com /2004/05/john-simon-p-diddy-has-presence.html   (432 words)

 Critic's Voice Series (4.1.03/5.12.03)
David Yezzi, poetry critic and director of the 92nd Street Y Unterberg Poetry Center, initiated the new series because he believes that critics guide the public towards great writers who might otherwise be overlooked and forgotten.
John Simon says, "The critic must be a writer, teacher, and thinker.
John Simon is the theater critic of New York magazine.
www.92y.org /content/crtics_voice_new_bloom.asp   (1157 words)

 Hudson River Valley - National Heritage Area
He will be joined by John Simon, theatre critic for New York Magazine and film critic for National Review, Stanley Crouch, columnist, novelist, essayist and critic who serves as an artistic consultant at Lincoln Center and Anne Midgette, a regular reviewer of classical music for The New York Times.
John Simon's work has also appeared in the New York Times, American Film and Hudson Review.
Three books, each a collection of his essays, will be published in May: John Simon on Film, John Simon on Music, and John Simon on Theatre.
www.hudsonrivervalley.com /index.cfm?section_id=5&page_id=262   (393 words)

 Theater News - Theater News: John Simon Lands Jobs at Bloomberg.com, Weekly Standard -
John Simon, the 80-year-old critic who was let go by New York magazine earlier this month after a 37-year career there, has found two new writing gigs: a weekly review column on Bloomberg.com and a monthly essay in The Weekly Standard.
Simon's Bloomberg column will appear every Friday, beginning sometime in June; he says that it will be very similar to his New York column, focusing on both Broadway and Off-Broadway shows.
Simon's replacement at New York is Jeremy McCarter, who until recently was the drama critic for the New York Sun.
www.theatermania.com /content/news.cfm/story/6098   (298 words)

 New York Press   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-05)
N.P. In writing about John Simon's recently published collections of criticism, one hefty tome apiece devoted to his observations on movies, theater and classical music, there's the temptation to go straight for the gold, to quote his wittiest lapidary insight.
Simon's attackers all sound like the same person; all outraged (ostensibly) in the same manner, they brandish the same projections onto him over and over, even if they have to reach back 30 or 40 years to find their ammunition.
John Simon on Theater reprints the piece most often cited as evidence of his so-called cruelty: the 1977 review of Liza Minnelli's The Act, one of the most exhilarating pans in criticism history.
nypress.com /print.cfm?content_id=14252   (1599 words)

 Audiofile, the Magazine for People Who Love Audiobooks   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-05)
(Simon has appeared in a number of Python films, and his wife, Nancy Lewis, was once the American manager of Monty Python.) The CV is filled with theatrical credits from the West End and Broadway and chock a block with major television and movie credits.
Simon performed the role of Arthur Dent, Douglas Adams's hapless hero, in the full-cast recording of THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY: THE TERTIARY PHASE, which won an Earphones Award in June.
Reviewers note Simon's skill in casting an atmospheric spell, whether it's in the Venice of this issue's cover title, THE THIEF LORD, or in the Provence of Peter Mayle's FRENCH LESSONS, or in the Victorian-era London domain of Anne Perry's Inspector Monk.
www.audiofilemagazine.com /gvpages/jones.shtml   (1278 words)

 The American Spectator
John Simon was unceremoniously dumped last week as New York magazine's theater critic, a few days before his 80th birthday.
It was thus fitting that the cheapest reaction to Simon's demise appeared on Arianna Huffington's new website from none other than theater bad boy David Mamet.
Reacting to the news that Simon had been "fired" from a post "he long disgraced," Mamet said Simon "has finally done something for the American Theatre." I suppose Mamet should be congratulated for not resorting to a single four-letter word in his brief commentary.
www.spectator.org /dsp_article.asp?art_id=8170   (757 words)

 Amazon.com: John Simon on Film: Criticism 1982-2001 (John Simon On--): Books: John Simon   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-05)
Simon himself was a member, he would have no difficulty recognizing the prejudice.
Simon likes to be entertained, just like all of us (see eg Analyze This) But he want more from a film--depth, authentic characters, serious attitude towards life; good acting; an honest and truthful depiction of what it is the filmaker is trying to say.
John Simon is my all time favorite film critic and Reverse Angle was my favorite book of film criticism....until this one.
www.amazon.com /exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1557835071?v=glance   (1503 words)

 James Wierzbicki / Opera on Film
OPERA ON FILM is a pretty impossible affair,'' wrote film critic John Simon in the Oct. 20, 1975, issue of New York magazine.
Simon granted that this was probably ''the best filmed opera ever,'' and he went on to laud Bergman for his choice of cast, his cinematography, his editing and his decision to ''set'' the opera not in its own fictional time but in the present.
When the opera was on the boards at the Met a year ago, professional critics were struck by its almost "cinematic" quality.
pages.sbcglobal.net /jameswierzbicki/operafilm.htm   (2608 words)

 The Editor's Blog: Theatre critic John Simon gets the heave-ho
After nearly 40 years slinging insults from his perch as theater critic at New York magazine, John Simon has been shown the door.
The viper-tongued Simon is legendary for his erudition, tart wit and cruel putdowns of those who offend him, often extending to sneers at a performer's physical appearance.
(On other film critics): Our film "critics," remembering how they played hooky from school, how delicious those popcorn-scented Saturday double or triple bills tasted, what initiation into sex was dispensed by Veda Van Borg or Patricia Medina, are slaves to their slobbering nostalgia, their onanistic mooning over their lost youths.
www.readingeagle.com /editor/archives/2005/05/john_simon_gets.html   (486 words)

 The Memphis Flyer :: the mid-south's news weekly: Books: Book Reviews: Simon Says
On May 10th, Simon was dismissed from that magazine after serving there for 37 years.
And time was, Simon mattered because his opinion mattered, because the art of criticism mattered, and maybe it still does, but where in the popular press and according to what widespread audience?
As Simon is despised by those who profess a love of movies and theater.
www.memphisflyer.com /gyrobase/PrintFriendly?oid=oid:10386   (456 words)

 The Cranky Critic and Huston's version of The Dead
The critic John Simon seems to believe, as do many people, that an original work of art is necessarily superior to a work which is based on that original.
Simon is correct in his assertion that we must inevitably lose some things in the translation from story to film, he fails to consider the possibility that what we receive may be worth what we give up.
Simon does, how well the film works as an adaptation, but also, simply, how well the film works.
www.geocities.com /Athens/Troy/3435/filmlitessay1.html   (1438 words)

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