In an 8.26 N.Y. Times essay about Norman Mailer‘s Maidstone, Gerald Howard reports that the legendary film critic Pauline Kael once called Mailer‘s Wild 90 “the worst movie that I’ve ever stayed to see all the way through.” Thus, Kael implied, she’d walked out on other bad movies with at least some regularity. (I remember reading a long time ago about her walking out on Raise the Titanic, muttering “life is too short.”) There will be those who will say “no, this does not bestow a respectable distinction to walking out on stinkers as a general practice,” and that is their right as American citizens.