Jules and Jim: Everett Collection
Owen Gleiberman
August 15, 2003 AT 04:00 AM EDT

What made an EW film critic call himself a dweeb?

In your opinion, what is the most overrated film that is universally regarded as a masterpiece? –Charles
Hey, thanks a lot! You’ve posed a question that is all but guaranteed to make me look like the dweeb who trashes Fellini in the ”Annie Hall” movie line. But here goes. The timeless classic that I absolutely cannot abide, even after half a dozen tries, is Francois Truffaut’s ”Jules and Jim.” Twee, precious, airless, and ”literary” to a fault, it’s a movie that coasts on aura more than any I can name — a love triangle that might have been designed for beatniks on the make.

When you’re reviewing a movie based on a book, do you read the book first? –Cathy
Sacrilegious as it may sound, I go out of my way not to read the book first. Often, I’ll read it after I see the movie (for example, I read ”Angela’s Ashes”; I confess that I skipped ”The Sum of All Fears”), but the real upshot, to me, is that the movie itself must stand on its own, pure and simple.

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