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David Edelstein (born 1959) is a freelance American film critic who has been the principal film critic for Slate and New York magazine, among others, and has appeared regularly on NPR's Fresh Air and CBS Sunday Morning programs. Over a long career, Edelstein has published more than 2000 film reviews. In 2021, Colin McEnroe called Edelstein "America's greatest living film critic".
On November 26, 2018, Edelstein came under controversy when he made a joke about a sex scene in Bertolucci's 1972 film Last Tango in Paris on his Facebook page. The joke was part of his post noting the passing of the film's director Bernardo Bertolucci. Edelstein post was widely criticized, and Edelstein promptly apologized and deleted the original post. He said he had been unaware of actress Maria Schneider's statement in 2007 that she wasn't told about the simulated sex scene until right before filming and that it caused her trauma. The following day, Fresh Air characterized the post as "offensive and unacceptable", and announced that Edelstein had been dismissed as a contributor. The statement reads, "The post does not meet the standards that we expect from Fresh Air contributors...We have decided to end Fresh Air's association with him, and have informed David accordingly." The harshness of the media response to Edelstein's post and apology, and of his firing by Fresh Air, was criticized by several media outlets, including Salon, the editorial board of the New York Post, and The American Conservative.
He is the co-author with independent film producer Christine Vachon of the book Shooting to Kill (1998). He is also the author of two plays, Feed the Monkey (Loeb Experimental Theater, Harvard College, 1993) and Blaming Mom (Watermark Theater, New York City, 1994).
^Vachon, Christine; Edelstein, David (1998). Shooting to Kill: how an independent producer blasts through the barriers to make movies that matter. Avon Books. ISBN9780380798544. OCLC39169872. See also "Shooting to Kill". www.goodreads.com. Retrieved 2017.