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|Alma mater||Columbia University|
|Home town||Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
Armond White is an American film and music critic who writes for National Review and Out. He was previously the editor of CityArts (2011–2014), the lead film critic for the alternative weekly New York Press (1997–2011), and the arts editor and critic for The City Sun (1984–1996). Other publications that have carried his work include Film Comment, Variety, The Nation, The New York Times, Slate, Columbia Journalism Review, and First Things.
Known for his provocative and idiosyncratic film reviews, White has been criticized for his often contrarian reviews. Among otherwise almost universally acclaimed movies that he has reviewed negatively are The Dark Knight, There Will Be Blood, Up, Toy Story 3, and Get Out (for which his review became the first to break the film's "100% positive" score on Rotten Tomatoes). Meanwhile, generally disliked films that he has supported include G. I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, Jonah Hex, Grown Ups, and I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, the latter of which he indicated as being a better gay-themed film than Brokeback Mountain.
White was raised in northwest Detroit, Michigan as the youngest of seven children. His family was the first African-American family to move to a primarily Jewish neighborhood, where he grew up. Raised Baptist, he later became Pentecostal, and identifies himself as "a believer".
His interest in journalism and film criticism began as a student at Detroit's Central High School, when he first read the book Kiss Kiss Bang Bang by film critic Pauline Kael, whom he cites for "her willingness to go against the hype", along with Andrew Sarris, for his "sophisticated love of cinema", as being a major inspiration on his choice of professional career. White received a Master of Fine Arts degree in film from Columbia University's School of the Arts in 1997.
White was the arts editor for The City Sun, where he wrote film, music and theater criticism, for the span of its publication from 1984 to 1996. He was hired by New York Press in 1997 and wrote for the paper until it ceased publication in August 2011. He then assumed the editorship of its sister publication CityArts starting in September.
White is a member of the National Society of Film Critics and New York Film Critics Online. He was the three-time chairman of the New York Film Critics Circle (1994, 2009 and 2010), and has also served as a member of the jury at the Sundance Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival and Mill Valley Film Festival and was a member of several National Endowment for the Arts panels. He has taught classes on film at Columbia University and Long Island University.
In January 2014, White was expelled from the New York Film Critics Circle for allegedly heckling director Steve McQueen at an event for the film 12 Years a Slave. White maintained his innocence, and characterized his expulsion as a "smear campaign". White received an Anti-Censorship Award at the 35th annual American Book Awards for being "unfairly removed" from critics' organization.
- The Resistance: Ten Years of Pop Culture That Shook the World (ISBN 978-0879515867)
- Rebel for the Hell of It: The Life of Tupac Shakur (ISBN 978-1560254614)
- McNeil, Daniel (2015). "The last honest film critic in America: Armond White and the children of James Baldwin". In Frey, Mattias; Sayad, Cecilia. Film Criticism in the Digital Age. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press. p. 61–78. ISBN 978-0813570723.
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- Child, Ben (January 7, 2014). "Steve McQueen heckled as 'garbage man' at New York film awards". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved January 13, 2014.
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- Chen, David (January 8, 2014). "The /Filmcast Speaks to Armond White About Heckling Claims: 'It's a Smear Campaign'". /Film. Retrieved January 14, 2014.
- Sollosi, Mary (January 30, 2014). "Profiles in Criticism: Thelma Adams". IndieWire.com. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
- Roberts, Jerry. The Complete History of American Film Criticism. Santa Monica Press, 2010. ISBN 978-1-59580-049-7
- Lopate, Phillip (ed.). American Movie Critics: An Anthology From the Silents Until Now. Library of America, 2006. ISBN 1-931082-92-8