Hollis Alpert, 91, a prominent and influential film critic and author who helped found the National Society of Film Critics, died Nov. 18, 2007

We’re a little late on reporting this one, because it took us a while to confirm that Alpert was Jewish. Thanks to Richard and Amelia, contributors to the alt.obituaries usenet news group and new friends of In My Heart, for confirming Alpert’s Jewishness.

Read a thorough story about Alpert in the L.A. Times, and a “local angle” story from his retirement hometown newspaper in Florida.

This is from the Times:

The lesser-known Alpert “was widely seen as a serious, knowledgeable, dedicated film critic. The Saturday Review . . . was a considerable presence on the scene then, when movie reviews mattered and were taken seriously as an intellectual matter,” said Joe Morgenstern, who is now the Wall Street Journal’s film critic….

Film critic and historian Leonard Maltin told The Times in an e-mail that Alpert “was an erudite man at a time when that was a virtue, not a liability, in the world of journalism and film criticism.”

His books included: “The Life and Times of Porgy and Bess,” “Broadway!: 125 Years of Musical Theatre,” “The Barrymores” (1964), and “Fellini: A Life” (1986) about the Italian film director. He also co-wrote autobiographies with actors Richard Burton and Charlton Heston.