Note the modesty of the subtitle's Notes which is consonant with the prepossessing introduction in which Mr. Schickel traces his conversion from early, catholic, constant movie-goer into the full-time reviewer for Life which he now is with ""professionalism foisted upon him."" Via this magazine he has had the widest readership of any critic although you question whether these reviews will stand up in book form as well as those of some of his confreres: Schickel has none of the punchy excitement of Pauline Kael or her technical authoritativeness; nor the bravura of Andrew Sarris, the thoughtfulness of Stanley Kauffmann. But then he has been working within the confines of this magazine's shorter form, following his own reasonable judgment and on the whole representative taste, repudiating most of the chic aggrandizement (i.e., elitism; auteurism; etc.) of the medium's practitioners. There are close to 100 reviews here along with occasional afterthoughts -- they are all, as they should be, honest and concrete but rarely distancing beyond the givens, which would give this retrospective stamina for that audience which has reified the last picture show into the film.