Move over, Siskel and Ebert! There’s another impressive movie maven in town. Irvirg Slifkin of Cherry Hill, N.J. is the hands-down winner of The Insider’s first annual Oscar competition, taking home a $100 Amazon gift card. Out of ten questions, Irv only got one wrong: Actor in a Leading Role. Irv incorrectly selected Chadwick Boseman, as did almost everyone in the country.. (The actual Oscar winner was Anthony Hopkins.)
It’s not an accident that Irv knows so much about film. It’s his calling. Irv has been teaching journalism and film at Temple University and Rowan College for 15 years. He also writes about film: he is the author of the books Groovy Movies: Far-Out Films of the Psychedelic Era and Filmadelphia: A Celebration of a City's Movies. Two years ago, Irv coproduced a three-part documentary called Time Warp: The Greatest Cult Films of All-Time. Not surprisingly, he is currently working on a new documentary.
If you live on the East Coast, you have probably sat next to Irv in the theater. He sees some 200 new and old films a year. Before the pandemic, Irv tells he Insider, “I would typically go to a theater two to three times a week.” But like the rest of America, Irv’s moviegoing habits have changed during the pandemic. “I have not been to a theater since last February,” he says. That doesn’t mean no movies, though. Says Irv, “the pandemic has given me an opportunity to watch older films I haven't seen. I have also been reading lots of biographies, so I have been watching movies that pertain to them over the year.” Irv’s favorite film of 2020 was Kajillionaire.
If you’re worried that Irv’s vita is too skimpy, fear no more. He typically programs and hosts movie series in the South Jersey area, mostly at libraries. “Because of the pandemic,” says Irv, “I started something called "Zoom Movie Club," which I hold several times a month. We hold free events with specific themes where other movie and TV fans can discuss movies and socialize. “
Whew! Congratulations, Irv, and pass the pandemic popcorn!