(Photo by New Line Productions)“Know Your Critic” is a column in which we interview Tomatometer-approved critics about their screening and reviewing habits, pet peeves, and personal favorites.Bilge Ebiri’s interest and diverse taste in film started early. He grew up watching movies that could easily be classified as “movies aimed at kids” – such as Peter Pan and Pete’s Dragon – but he also saw a number of highly stylized and psychologically weighty movies, too, from Apocalypse Now and Aliens to The Deer Hunter.“I was watching spaghetti westerns from a very young age, I think from third or fourth grade on,” he told Rotten Tomatoes.The movie he’s seen more than any other is A Fistful of Dollars, a Sergio Leone spaghetti western starring Clint Eastwood: “For a while, every day I would come home and just watch my Betamax of A Fistful of Dollars and eat ice cream,” Ebiri says. “I was a latchkey child, so I was just at home doing this by myself while my parents were at work.”Now, he is excited by Gina Prince-Bythewood’s films (which he believes deserve greater recognition), and intrigued by the works of Lars von Trier (“He s certainly made bad movies, but he s never not made an interesting movie,” he says) and Zhang Yimou, some of which Ebiri considers “eternal masterpieces” while others are “middling. “The legacy of auteurism is that even filmmakers who don t necessarily always make a great film, if they re a great filmmaker, they ll always make an interesting film,” Ebiri says.Bilge Ebiri is a movie critic at Vulture and former lead critic at Village Voice. His reviews have been published in the New York Times and Rolling Stone, among others.What do you think makes a good movie?Oh, I can t answer that. It s all sorts of things. Anything I say would be wrong.There s not a one-size-fits-all model.There are certain things that make one movie good, and then those same things can make another movie bad. There s no way to answer that question without talking about a specific movie.An example, I was just talking about this with somebody the other day, the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. I love the Lord of the Rings movies. I despise The Hobbit movies. A lot of the things that make the Lord of the Rings movies so special are the things that make The Hobbit movies, for me, unbearable.What do you think is the biggest misconception about critics?There are two misconceptions about critics and they re slightly at odds with each other. One of them is, Well, all you have to do is watch movies, what a cushy job you have. And the other one is, Do you even like movies? Both of these misconceptions are wrong, and they re wrong in different ways.I think critics would love to spend all their time watching movies, but the truth is, you don t. Often, you re usually writing or you re researching or dealing with publicists or dealing with all sorts of other things. And only a very small part of your day, if you re lucky, is spent watching movies…And as far as not enjoying movies – different critics are different obviously, but I think most critics, when they go into a film, are looking forward to it. Sometimes you can enjoy the time you have at a movie without necessarily enjoying the movie or without necessarily thinking the movie is all that great. That s why so many of us love the theatrical experience, even after all that – because in the end, we love the experience of seeing the movie, even if the movie itself isn t great.Who is an up-and-coming critic that you want people to check out? “Up-and-coming” is also obviously up for interpretation.That s the thing that I m struggling with because I m 47 years old. A lot of people are up and coming to me even though they ve been doing this for a long time…Monica Castillo is a critic I really like and she s a friend. And she s been around for a while. I don t think of her as a newbie or anything like that, but she s younger and she s somebody who I feel deserves to write more and be better known.