Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Indiewire logo

Ruthe and Me (My Sundance Enemy)

ReelPolitik By Anthony Kaufman | ReelPolitik January 27, 2005 at 3:09AM

Ruthe and Me (My Sundance Enemy)
6

At Sundance 2005, I lost my mind, but only briefly. Fortunately, my hysterics garnered me more fans than detractors, and yet for a moment there, I was not in control of myself. The story, of how the San Francisco Chronicle's Ruthe Stein stole my seat at a press screening of "The Jacket" and my subsequent vituperative attack, has already been recounted elsewhere by some bloggers, on Defamer and San Jose Mercury News. And while I appreciate my 15 minutes of fame, I regret that I ever came to blows with Ruthe Stein.

That's not to say that she didn't richly deserve it. Judging from those who spoke to me afterwards, it sounds like Ruthe Stein has been in need of a serious chewing out for some time now.

But the incident reflects something wider, indicative of the entire film festival environment, where people filled with entitlement, privilege, and selfishness think they are more important than you. Has Ruthe cut in front of people while waiting in line for a movie? Has she waved at the shuttle bus to pick her up at an unofficial stop? Has she snuck into parties, passing people by who are waiting patiently outside? Has she taken into consideration anyone in the world besides herself? I'm sure she has done all these things.

But the problem is, so have I. Why did I freak out in the first place? Because what she did was totally unethical, unreasonable, and downright inconsiderate. Of course. But also because I was thinking only of myself. The only person in the room who wasn't thinking of himself was the man gracious enough to give up his seat for me, not a journalist by the way, but an industryite named Paul Schwartzman (who Ruthe whispered to me took her seat -- I don't believe her).

Who ever is to blame, I'll bet most of us Sundancers have done these things, too. Although I've never thrown someone's things off their chair and stolen their seat, I have edged in front of people in line for a movie and squirmed my way into the VIP entrance for a party. Maybe the reason I was so angry with Ruthe is she reminded me of the dark side of myself. But I guess the difference between Ruthe and me is she didn't seem to mind.

Follow us

E-Mail Updates



Recent Comments

By Tony: I saw this with my girlfriend. She was completely taken in by it. This movie is no better than a soap opera. Absolute drivel, pandering to…

Can Tearjerking Doc "The Hunting Ground" Change Colleges' Sexual Assault Policies?

Jan 28th, 2015 1:03am

By Joe Britz: While rape is a horrible crime, it doesn't mean we simply toss Blackstone out the window. The foundation of our justice system is innocent…

Can Tearjerking Doc "The Hunting Ground" Change Colleges' Sexual Assault Policies?

Jan 28th, 2015 12:31am

By Amelia: It reminds me of the Dark Ages, where people would accuse a woman of being a Witch and everybody would simply believe the accusation because…

Can Tearjerking Doc "The Hunting Ground" Change Colleges' Sexual Assault Policies?

Jan 27th, 2015 3:25pm

By Joe: There is no rape culture. Rape is a sickening and illegal act but apparently there are some who want to return to the old fashioned lynch mob…

Can Tearjerking Doc "The Hunting Ground" Change Colleges' Sexual Assault Policies?

Jan 27th, 2015 1:31pm

By roosevelto: I think that this movie is many things, one of those is political. Even if we suppose that it wasn't Afflec's intention, when has become…

"Argo" Reconsidered: Ben Affleck is a Right-Wing Propagandist

Jan 16th, 2015 5:08pm

By roosevelto: I watched the movie with the most naive eyes possible. I said to myself, don't care about facts, don't care about propaganda, don't care abou…

"Argo" Reconsidered: Ben Affleck is a Right-Wing Propagandist

Jan 16th, 2015 4:53pm

By Anthony Kaufman: "The Look of Silence" will definitely be on next year's list! It hasn't opened in the U.S. yet.

The Top 12 Documentaries of 2014

Jan 3rd, 2015 1:09pm