Class of 1972
Lou Lumenick, the chief movie critic of The New York Post since 1999, typifies the baby boomer generation that attended City College. He entered CCNY during the tempestuous Sixties and spent a total of 10 semesters on campus. He spent most of that time writing for and editing The Campus (as well as the summer session newspaper, The Beaver) rather than attending classes. He was editor in chief of The Campus in the spring of 1969, covering the occupation of South Campus by open admissions advocates and a police raid that precipitated the resignation of President Buell G. Gallagher that May.
During his sophomore year, he began working part time at The New York Post as a copy boy and became the paper’s first CCNY stringer. When he took the time to attend class, Lumenick most enjoyed the survey classes taught by Herman G. Weinberg, a noted scholar of such film pioneers as Erich von Stroheim, Ernst Lubitsch and Josef von Sternberg. He also took filmmaking courses at The New School.
“I wouldn't be where I am today without the journalism skills and contacts I acquired while working on The Campus,” Lumenick said. “And I probably wouldn't be reviewing movies today if I hadn't taken a film survey class at CCNY with the legendary cinephile Herman G. Weinberg.”
Lumenick, who was born on Sept. 11, 1949, and raised in the Astoria section of Queens, left City College in 1972, landing his first full-time journalism job at the now defunct Hartford Times. He worked his way up to city editor of the morning edition before the paper folded in 1976. In the ensuing 18 years, Lumenick worked at The Record in Hackensack, N.J. For nine of those years he was the newspaper’s film critic. For the rest of his time at The Record, he took on a wide variety of writing and editing assignments. During his career there, he received awards for supervising coverage of breaking news (a civil disturbance prompted by the killing of an unarmed black teen in Teaneck, N.J.) and he twice received awards in critical writing from the New Jersey Press Association.
|Lou Lumenick (left) with Farran Smith Nehme and TCM host Robert Osborne|
Lumenick returned to The Post in 1995. He initially served as the paper’s metropolitan editor, supervising a staff of 70 reporters and editors, before assuming his current position as chief film critic. In that role, he chronicled multiple visits to the Sundance and Toronto Film Festivals as well as the Cannes Film Festival.
Lumenick is a member of the New York Film Critics Circle and has been interviewed about film on radio and on television programs including “The Today Show,” “Biography” and “Entertainment Tonight.” He has contributed DVD introductions to a series of vintage movies distributed by The Roan Group and in 2007, he launched a popular movie blog hosted by The Post’s web site. Together with Farran Smith Nehme, a Post colleague, Lumenick conceived and created “Shadows of Russia,” a series of 20 films that aired in 2010 on Turner Classic Movies. He also appeared on TCM as a guest programmer in October 2010, introducing “The Last Flight” and “All Through the Night.” His essay on the movie “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” is included in The Criterion Collection’s 2014 release of the film.