Brian Thomas

Background and Bio

A Critic Unleashed!

I was born in Chicago, where I reside today
(Nort' Side). I went to Central High School, outside
Burlington, Illinois. Attended the Chicago Academy
of Fine Arts for one semester before the school
closed in a big scandal in 1978. Transferred to
Columbia College, where I studied art, writing and
film. At the same time, I was hired by the Chicago
Artist-In-Residence program, and went to work in the
City's Graphics and Reproduction Center. I began to
pick up so much freelance cartooning and animation
work that I dropped out of Columbia just before
graduating. I began freelancing full time in 1986.

Pretty dull, huh? Well don't blame me --
you're the one who decided to look up my

Most of my work has appeared in comic-books,
such as Astro Boy, Speed
, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Like most cartoonists, I've always been an obsessed
with movies. Several years ago, I began contributing
articles and reviews to film magazines and books. I
believe I'm the only writer to contribute to both the
Video WatchDog and the VideoHound
books (including VideoHound's Complete Guide to
Cult Flicks and Trash Pics
- ask for it by name -
and the upcoming VideoHound Science Fiction Video
), which makes me a double-dogged
critic, I guess.

Like Roger Ebert, I believe that film viewing is a
subjective experience, further enhanced by the time,
place, and popcorn quality of each screening. And
that's what you'll get here. I'll write from my own
viewpoint, without hiding behind the editorial "we"
persona. I'll try not to steer you away from solid
entertainment just because I've (probably) seen
more movies than you have. And I won't come out of
a (free) screening telling you that the art direction is
worth your $7.50, even though the rest of the picture

You'll also note that I don't use any
"thumbs" or star ratings -- these seem like a cheap,
shorthand/sound bite type of appraisal, and a style
of journalism that can often be misleading.

But if you find star ratings useful, let me know --
I plan to update this page as often as I can, including
a link to an e-mailbag page. If you have comments,
arguments, and especially praise, please send it
to me.
And unlike most columnists -- if this
feature lasts, my photo will age from time to time.

I'm excited by the possibilities of an electronic
newspaper -- for example: unlike conventional
newspapers, all my reviews will always be available
in each issue. Plus, all the other features that are
possible on a website. We're just getting started.

Which makes this even better -- I hate coming
in in the middle.

Brian Thomas
Columnist, Internet Daily News
IDN Cinema

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