This is Cole Smithey's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Cole Smithey's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
Cole Smithey
Manhattan
The Smartest Film Critic in the World
Interests: Film, Jazz Guitar, Teaching, Craft Beer, Great Food, Travel.
Recent Activity
Image
WGA Awards: The Complete Winners List Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Cole Smithey - Film Blog
Image
John Turturro plays a Clifford Odets-styled playwright with a mean case of writer’s block after moving to LA to his first screenplay for a big Hollywood studio. Part “Eraserhead” and part “Naked Lunch,” “Barton Fink” is like whitefish on sand. The neo-noir-styled story takes place around the 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. If that little factoid is lost on most audiences, it nonetheless provides the Coens with a sense of societal dread that comes through in every frame of the picture. Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
You can't put a price on a filmic document such as this one. Also, you can plainly see and hear how much better X was than most of the other bands in the film. Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
Writer/director Paul Bartell plays a (possibly closeted gay) L.A. wine collector with plans to open a restaurant with his hot-to-trot nurse wife (Mary Waronov). The platonic pair blunders into an unusual way of capitalizing on the early '80s swinging lifestyle of copious sex and drugs when they run BDSM ads in the local smut rag to attract wealthy perverts that they murder for their cash and cars. Cannibalism beckons. “Eating Raoul” is an hilarious black... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
“Lion” is a one-note movie that works in spite of its simplistic treatment of a story that sounds better on paper that in it does in the hands of newbie director Garth Davis. Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
Samuel L. Jackson’s pitch-perfect rendition of James Baldwin’s unmistakable voice is as pure as Baldwin’s memoir recollections of his murdered civil rights peers Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. collected in his unfinished manuscript “Remember This House.” Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
“Moonlight” normalizes racism. It also perpetrates stereotypes about homosexuality and the repressive conditions of blacks in a country that has been carrying on an incremental genocide against this minority since the first slaves were brought here. Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Reviews
Image
Bernardo Bertolucci willingly falls into every cinematic pitfall any film artist could make in this follow-up film to “1900,” an epic masterpiece that seamlessly shifts from formal to neo-realistic to sweeping romance in a wartime setting before tilting into magical realism. Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Reviews
Make America Great Again. Trump’s campaign slogan was a direct appeal to nationalism. As a son of the Rust Belt city of Dayton, Ohio, I wasn’t surprised to see that it worked. Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
The Cramps - Live at Napa State Mental Hospital Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Film Blog
Image
Writer/director Mike Mills — no, not the bass player for REM; he makes better movies — has made a simultaneously preachy, smarmy, and condescending (yet nostalgic) vision of the ‘70’s heady Punk-fuelled age that gave way to the Me Generation of Ronald Reagan in the ‘80s. Infuriating by design, this rudderless story can’t even locate its protagonist. Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Reviews
Image
It's no secret that I hit the New Beverly when ever I'm in L.A. You should too. This place is awesome! Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Film Blog
Image
Elem Klimov's communist parents constructed his first name as an acronym taken from Engels, Lenin, and Marx. During his 70 years, Elem Klimov made only five films: "Welcome, or No Trespassing" (1964), "The Adventures of a Dentist" (1965), "Agony" (1975) and "Farewell" (1981). "Come and See" was his astounding final picture that would finally establish Elem Klimov as a storyteller of untold narrative depth and intuitive filmic sensitivity. Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
New York City, January 24, 2017 — Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs was joined by Academy members Demian Bichir, Dustin Lance Black, Glenn Close, Guillermo del Toro, Marcia Gay Harden, Terrence Howard, Jennifer Hudson, Brie Larson, Jason Reitman, Gabourey Sidibe and Ken Watanabe for the 89th Academy Awards nominations this morning. La La Land led the nominations with 14, which ties the record of most nominations ever with 1997’s Titanic and 1950’s All About Eve.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
Image
While Hollywood pretends to wet itself over “La La Land,” a musical without a single tune you can remember, much less hum, the system prepares for the fallout from Amazon making Oscar history with its Best Picture Nominee “Manchester By The Sea.” In a year when the field for Best Picture includes clunkers such as “Hidden Figures” and “Arrival” you know what you’re getting. Is this the year that the Oscars go African American? You... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
MARTIN SCORSESE'S SILENCE: THE VIDEO ESSAY Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Reviews
Image
Although condemned by some cultural gatekeepers and critics as indecent (even after And God Created Woman was edited, and dubbed, for its U.S. release), Brigitte Bardot's stunning portrayal of a freethinking woman became the celebrated subject of Simone de Beauvoir's 1959 essay The Lolita Syndrome. In it, de Beauvoir described Brigitte Bardot as a "locomotive of women's history" for good reason. The petite but curvy French actress captured the collective global imaginations of women and men alike. Still, the picture adds up to more than merely Bardot's obvious physical allure and headstrong attitude. It is a timeless social document of the ways that a young woman's allure can fuel, destroy, and build the dreams of men who fall under her spell. If Helen of Troy was "the face that launched a thousand ships," Brigitte Bardot was the girl who incited a sea change of sexual liberation in Western culture. Continue reading
Posted Jan 10, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
Image
Talya Lavie’s 2014 black comedy, about a woman’s place in the Israeli Army, plays like a cross between “Reform School Girls” and “Catch 22.” Lavie skewers religious and military indoctrination in the context of psychological and physical abuses levied against female soldiers by male and female officers alike. Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
Based on the true story of Marie-Louise Giraud, Claude Chabrol’s World War II era drama features Isabelle Huppert as a lower class single mother of two in Nazi occupied France. Marie’s war-ravaged husband unexpectedly returns home just as she finds her calling as an amateur abortionist for local women. Continue reading
Posted Jan 7, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
The term “sex-kitten” was coined for Brigitte Bardot for her sexually liberated role as Juliette in her [then] husband Roger Vadim’s 1956 debut film. Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Reviews
Image
“There’s no savior out there.” That’s a line from “Lord’s Prayer,” a song written by TV Smith for the Lords of the Church, a band that trafficked in 1980s melodic punk. Here’s some more: “There ain’t no savior out there Your stairway to heaven leads nowhere Don’t look to me for emancipation You are your only salvation.” Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Articles
Image
While not the in-depth character study of the prolific Japanese actor that its title implies, “Mifune: The Last Samurai” is a rollicking survey of the gifted artist who played muse to Akira Kurosawa for much of the director’s storied career Continue reading
Posted Jan 2, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
You can tell by its title that David Frankel's "Collateral Beauty" sucks, just as you know in advance that Matthew Ornstein's "Accidental Courtesy" will be a dog. This latest inane trend in insipid film titles will most surely include such headings as "Inconsequential Ambivalence," "Incidental Gratitude," "Insufferable Poetry," and "Indolent Elegance." Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Film Blog
Image
“Fat Girl” is an understated picture that doesn’t shy away from any of the ambitious thematic heights that Breillat fearlessly mounts. Like Breillat’s debut feature (“A Real Young Girl”) “Fat Girl” is a masterpiece awaiting inspection by audiences open to its meanings and insightful commentary. Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules
Image
Writer-director Tom Ford’s psychological thriller is a glorified student film. Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2017 at Cole Smithey - Capsules