Herald reviewer elected to National Society of Film Critics

With his lifetime appointment, Robert Horton joins a membership of the top film critics in the U.S.

Robert Horton began reviewing movies for The Daily Herald in 1983. (Submitted photo)

Robert Horton began reviewing movies for The Daily Herald in 1983. (Submitted photo)

Robert Horton, who first began reviewing movies for The Daily Herald in 1983, has been elected to the National Society of Film Critics.

He was one of two people elected to the group this year. The other was David Fear of Rolling Stone.

Election to the group is a lifetime appointment. “I was really honored and really, really pleased,” Horton said.

Fewer than half of the candidates get in. A member nominates candidates, they are vetted by an election committee, and then the group votes by mail after reading an introductory letter and sample reviews, Liz Weis, the group’s executive director, said an in email.

Candidates must practice a high standard of criticism with regularity for a media outlet of distinction, or of large, general-interest circulation, or both.

The only two other people in the Northwest who have been elected to the group are Richard Jameson, one of the Seattle Weekly’s first movie critics, and Sheila Benson, who also wrote for Seattle Weekly.

Nominees were asked to submit five reviews from 2017. Among the reviews Horton included in the application were his writings on “Detroit,” a movie he liked, and “The Beguiled,” which he did not.

Horton, 59, is a University of Washington graduate.

Prior to writing reviews for The Herald, Horton wrote reviews for the Seattle Film Society’s newsletter and occasionally for The Seattle Times.

Nancy Erickson, a former features editor, selected Horton to begin reviewing movies for The Herald.

“For better or worse for Herald readers, she let me in,” Horton said.

Following the Herald’s purchase by Sound Publishing Inc. in 2013, Horton’s reviews began being published in the Seattle Weekly, which Sound also owns.

The National Society of Film Critics was founded in 1966 to promote film criticism and filmmaking. Many of the top film critics in the U.S. are members.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or salyer@heraldnet.com.

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