Michael Brunswick Ritchie (November 28, 1938 – April 16, 2001) was an American film director.
Ritchie was born in Waukesha, Wisconsin, the son of Patricia (née Graney) and Benbow Ferguson Ritchie. His family later moved to Berkeley, California, where his father was a professor of experimental psychology at the University of California at Berkeley1 and his mother was the art and music librarian for the city.
He attended Berkeley High School before becoming interested in film, and was accepted at Harvard University following high school.
Ritchie attracted attention in his senior year at Harvard in 1960 by directing the original production of the Arthur Kopit play, Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma’s Hung You in the Closet and I’m Feelin’ So Sad in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
His work on Kopit’s play led to a job offer from Robert Saudek, the producer of the Omnibus television series. Ritchie also directed episodes of Profiles in Courage and… read more
Man, he made 4 great great films: Downhill Racer, The Candidate, Smile - his “winning-trilogy” on the american dream. And Prime Cut. After that he got dragged into the mainstream current where he subsequently drowned artistically.
Don't get me wrong, I loved Golden Child...when I was a Stupid Child! Seeing it as an adult...*shudder*. The two Fletch films were nothing more than excuses for Chevy Chase to play dress up and try out silly voices. The Island is a complete disaster. The three sports movies The Bad News Bears, Semi Tough, Wildcats are at best...mildly entertaining. An Almost Perfect Affair is not worth mentioning. Couch Trip was an attempt to make an old fashioned screwball comedy...I say, screw that fuckball comedy - fuck that screwball comedy!...just plain awful. Watch his first 4 masterpieces, forget about the rest.