David Sterritt

Last updated
David Sterritt
David Sterritt interviews Werner Herzog at the 49th San Francisco Film Festival, 2006
Born (1944-09-11) September 11, 1944 (age 74)
United States
Occupation Film critic, author, scholar
Partner(s) Mikita Brottman

David Sterritt (born September 11, 1944) is a film critic, author and scholar. He is most notable for his work on Alfred Hitchcock and Jean-Luc Godard, and his many years as the Film Critic for The Christian Science Monitor , where, from 1968 until his retirement in 2005, he championed avant garde cinema, theater and music. He has a Ph.D. in Cinema Studies from New York University and is the Chairman of the National Society of Film Critics. [1] Sterritt is known for his intelligent discussions of controversial films and his lively, accessible style. He is particularly well known for his careful considerations of films with a spiritual connection, such as Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), and Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ (2004).

An author is the creator or originator of any written work such as a book or play, and is also considered a writer. More broadly defined, an author is "the person who originated or gave existence to anything" and whose authorship determines responsibility for what was created.

Scholar medieval student or cleric

A scholar is a person who devotes themselves to scholarly pursuits, particularly to the study of an area in which they have developed expertise. A scholar may also be an academic, a person who works as a teacher or researcher at a university or other higher education institution. An academic usually holds an advanced degree.

Alfred Hitchcock British filmmaker

Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was an English film director and producer, widely regarded as one of the most influential filmmakers in the history of cinema. Known as "the Master of Suspense", he directed over 50 feature films in a career spanning six decades, becoming as well known as any of his actors thanks to his many interviews, his cameo roles in most of his films, and his hosting and producing of the television anthology Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955–1965).


His writings on film and film culture appear regularly in various publications, including The New York Times , MovieMaker Magazine , [2] The Huffington Post, [3] Senses of Cinema, [4] Cineaste, [5] Film Comment , [6] Film Quarterly , [7] Beliefnet, [8] CounterPunch, [9] and elsewhere. Sterritt has appeared as a guest on CBS Morning News , Nightline, Charlie Rose , Geraldo at Large , Catherine Crier Live , CNN Live Today , Countdown with Keith Olbermann and The O'Reilly Factor , among many other television and radio shows.

<i>The New York Times</i> Daily broadsheet newspaper based in New York City

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Senses of Cinema is a quarterly online film magazine founded in 1999 by filmmaker Bill Mousoulis. Based in Melbourne, Australia, Senses of Cinema publishes work by film critics from all over the world, including critical essays, career overviews of the works of key directors, and coverage of many international festivals.

Cineaste is an American quarterly film magazine that was established in 1967.

Sterritt has written influentially on the film and culture of the 1950s, the Beat Generation, French New Wave cinema, the films of Alfred Hitchcock, Robert Altman, Spike Lee and Terry Gilliam, and the TV series, The Honeymooners.

The Beat Generation was a literary movement started by a group of authors whose work explored and influenced American culture and politics in the post-war era. The bulk of their work was published and popularized throughout the 1950s. The central elements of Beat culture are the rejection of standard narrative values, making a spiritual quest, the exploration of American and Eastern religions, the rejection of materialism, explicit portrayals of the human condition, experimentation with psychedelic drugs, and sexual liberation and exploration.

New Wave is a French film movement which emerged in the 1950s and 1960s. It is a form of European art cinema, and is often referred to as one of the most influential movements in the history of cinema. New Wave filmmakers were linked by their rejection of the traditional film conventions then dominating France, and by a spirit of iconoclasm. Common features of the New Wave included radical experimentation with editing, visual style, and narrative, as well as engagement with the social and political upheavals of the era.

Robert Altman American film director and screenwriter

Robert Bernard Altman was an American film director, screenwriter, and producer. A five-time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Director and an enduring figure from the New Hollywood era, Altman was considered a "maverick" in making films with a highly naturalistic but stylized and satirical aesthetic, unlike most Hollywood films. He is consistently ranked as one of the greatest and most influential filmmakers in American cinema.

Jean-Luc Godard, interviews Godardinterviews.jpg
Jean-Luc Godard, interviews


Sterritt began his career at Boston After Dark (now the Boston Phoenix ), where he was Chief Editor. He then moved to The Christian Science Monitor , where he worked as the newspaper's Film Critic and Special Correspondent. During his tenure at the Monitor, Sterritt held a number of additional appointments. From 1978-1980 he was the Film Critic for All Things Considered , on National Public Radio. From 1969 to 1973, he was the Boston Theater Critic for Variety, and he sat on the selection committee for the New York Film Festival from 1988 to 1992. Between 1994 and 2002 he was Senior Critic at the National Critics Institute of the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, and he served as the video critic for Islands magazine from 2000-2003. From 2005-2007 he was Programming Associate at the Makor/Steinhardt Center of the 92nd Street Y. He is a member of the National Editorial Advisory Group of Tikkun, is the Editor in Chief of Quarterly Review of Film and Video , is a Contributing Writer to MovieMaker magazine, and the Chief Book Critic for Film Quarterly . Sterritt has also held a number of significant academic appointments. From 1999-2015 he was the Co-Chair, with William Luhr, of the Columbia University Seminar on Cinema and Interdisciplinary Interpretation. He is currently on the Film Studies Faculty at Columbia University's Graduate Film Division, and Adjunct Faculty at the Maryland Institute College of Art in the Department of Language, Literature and Culture and the Department of Art History. He is also Distinguished Visiting Faculty in the Goldring Arts Journalism Program at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, and Professor Emeritus of Theater and Film at Long Island University, where he taught from 1993 to 2005, obtaining tenure in 1998.

<i>The Christian Science Monitor</i> Nonprofit news organization owned by the Church of Christ, Scientist

The Christian Science Monitor (CSM) is a nonprofit news organization that publishes daily articles in electronic format as well as a weekly print edition. It was founded in 1908 as a daily newspaper by Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Church of Christ, Scientist. As of 2011, the print circulation was 75,052.

<i>All Things Considered</i> news program on the American network National Public Radio (NPR)

All Things Considered (ATC) is the flagship news program on the American network National Public Radio (NPR). It was the first news program on NPR, premiering on May 3, 1971. It is broadcast live on NPR affiliated stations in the United States, and worldwide through several different outlets, formerly including the NPR Berlin station in Germany. All Things Considered and Morning Edition were the highest rated public radio programs in the United States in 2002 and 2005. The show combines news, analysis, commentary, interviews, and special features, and its segments vary in length and style. ATC airs weekdays from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (live) or Pacific Standard Time or from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Central Standard Time. A weekend version of ATC, Weekend All Things Considered, airs on Saturdays and Sundays.

<i>Variety</i> (magazine) American weekly entertainment trade magazine owned by Penske Media Corporation

Variety is an American media company owned by Penske Media Corporation. It was founded by Sime Silverman in New York in 1905 as a weekly newspaper reporting on theater and vaudeville. In 1933 it added Daily Variety, based in Los Angeles, to cover the motion-picture industry. Variety.com features breaking entertainment news, reviews, box office results, cover stories, videos, photo galleries and more, plus a credits database, production charts and calendar, with archive content dating back to 1905.

Sterritt is the partner of psychoanalyst, author and cultural critic Mikita Brottman.

Mikita Brottman Scholar, author

Mikita Brottman is a British American non-fiction author, scholar, and psychologist known for her interest in true crime. Her writing blends a number genres, often incorporating elements of autobiography, psychoanalysis, forensic psychology, and literary history.


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  1. National Society of Film Critics Announcement, September 23, 2009
  2. "Sterritt, Moviemaker Year of the Indie, January 15, 2006". Archived from the original on October 18, 2010. Retrieved September 25, 2009.
  3. Sterritt, Faith! Family! Films! Huffington Post, January 12, 2009
  4. Sterritt, Senses of Cinema, Taste of Kierostami Archived 2007-02-08 at the Wayback Machine
  5. "Sterritt, Cineaste, Four Alain Renais Films on DVD". Archived from the original on 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2009-09-25.
  6. Best of 2000 Film Comment [ permanent dead link ]
  7. Sterritt and Brottman, Review: Irreversible Archived 2009-06-04 at the Wayback Machine
  8. David Sterritt, Beliefnet, Playing with our Fears 07/05
  9. Sterritt, Counterpunch, Screening the Politics out of the Iraq War, July 2009