Cole Smithey Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Cole Smithey

Cole Smithey
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
B 29% Smokin' Aces (2007) Writer/director Joe Carnahan (see "Blood, Guts, Bullets and Octane" and "Narc") makes an overreaching but inspired effort at reinventing the dumb gangsters with big guns motif that Quentin Tarantino created and continues to modify.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2007
C 11% Blood and Chocolate (2007) Blood & Chocolate is a werewolf movie for teen girls to giggle at when they aren't contemplating their own quest for sensual and societal freedom.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2007
C 70% Freedom Writers (2007) LaGravenese ("The Horse Whisperer") has a tendency to sanitize every scene, and when he hits the audience's emotional sweet spot and a few tears begin to flow, you have the feeling that the release is unjustified.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 15, 2007
B 54% Alpha Dog (2007) With a dream cast of the youngest and brightest actors of the day, Cassavetes creates a movie that feels like you're watching an apathetic group of kids riding down a progressively steeper incline in an unmanned vehicle.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2007
C 26% Stomp the Yard (2007) What newbie screenwriter Robert Adetuyi and music video director Sylvain White intend is to reinvent the clunky step moves as an extension of freestyle hip-hop under an umbrella of collegiate comradeship.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2007
A- 95% Pan's Labyrinth (2006) The childhood desperation that permeates his dramatic sensibility is elevated by del Toro's sincere devotion to imaginary belief systems rooted in cycles of nature.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 4, 2007
A+ 91% Letters from Iwo Jima (2006) Clint Eastwood performed the year's most ambitious and original cinematic feat in making a pair of companion films about the significance of the battle at Iwo Jima and the ways in which the Japanese and American governments treated that pivotal engagement‐
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2006
A- 53% The Good Shepherd (2006) "The Good Shepherd" is all about tone and the stoic atmosphere of secrets and lies that protects U.S. government agents. It's about a milieu of insidious self-important people in positions of power who took advantage of their autonomy.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2006
B+ 92% Children of Men (2006) Children of Men is an anecdotal vision of the way the future seems to be headed from a 2006 vantagepoint. There is only a tiny glimmer of hope, and it does not extend to the masses.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2006
C- 67% The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) This Sisyphean movie succeeds in portraying '80s era San Francisco as a deceptively appealing city with a flaky underbelly inhabited by desperate hippies and homeless people.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 8, 2006
B 88% Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961) Although the movie won Oscars for music and song ("Moon River") by Henry Mancini, "Breakfast At Tiffany's" has a dark underbelly and unlikable characters made attractive by their eccentric behavior and expensive wardrobes.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2006
A 62% Blood Diamond (2006) DiCaprio is the Marlon Brando of our time. The job he does in "Blood Diamond" should earn him an Oscar, more so even than for his performance in "The Departed" for which he will likely also be nominated.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2006
B- 17% Turistas (Paradise Lost) (2006) Riding the current wave of horror movies populated with American travelers preyed upon by torturing crazies, "Turistas" plays its suspense trump card as the first American film shot entirely in Brazil.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 27, 2006
C+ 52% The Fountain (2006) Darren Aronofsky is a stylistically visionary director trapped by the limitations of his writing abilities. The Fountain works best as a high-concept sci-fi film with all of its seams showing.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 19, 2006
B+ 94% Casino Royale (2006) All fears surrounding the future of cinema's longest running franchise are put to rest with Daniel Craig ("Layer Cake") more than capably filling 007's shoes in a Bond film that shatters formula constraints and delivers nail-biting action in a considerabl‐
Read More | Posted Nov 15, 2006
B 50% Fast Food Nation (2006) Where this year's mushy tobacco satire "Thank You For Smoking" failed due to its filmmakers' refusal to take enough of a stand, "Fast Food Nation" has no such pretense.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 10, 2006
A- 48% Harsh Times (2006) "Harsh Times" is a modern and raw reflection of the disastrous effects of war on the soldiers that survive them and the potential danger they pose.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 2, 2006
A 91% Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2006) [Baron] Cohen melds the pranking of "Jackass," the punking of "Punk'd," the satire of Matt Stone and Trey Parker, and the inventiveness of Mel Brooks to create an original brand of comedy that stands alone as a defiant manifesto for compulsive laughs.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 27, 2006
D 70% The Science of Sleep (2006) Navel-gazing director Michel Gondry ("Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind") wears his developmentally arrested heart on his sleeve, on his pants, and on his forehead in the most self-indulgent movie of 2006.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2006
A+ 98% Brazil (1985) If anyone ever doubts the visionary significance of Terry Gilliam's once bright genius as a filmmaker of enormous depth and cynical humor, you need only to visit upon his career-topping 1985 masterpiece of surreal satire.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2006
B- 75% Catch a Fire (2006) "Catch a Fire" is an incendiary movie about an individual's desperate decision to battle a corrupt government system after being mentally and psychically abused.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2006
A 73% Flags of Our Fathers (2006) "Flags of Our Fathers" is a tremendous film about the very beginning of celebrity worship, and our need to invent and memorialize brave men.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 20, 2006
A 90% The Departed (2006) Martin Scorsese is a master director in every sense of the word and with the help of his ensemble has made a masterpiece of modern cinema, complete with a triple climax ending.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 5, 2006
C+ 25% School for Scoundrels (2006) "School For Scoundrels" relies on Thornton's hovering performance to drive the film, and the formula nearly succeeds in the face of Jon Heder's narrow comic range and inability to develop his character over the course of the story.‐
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2006
A- 74% Jet Li's Fearless (Huo Yuan Jia) (Legend of a Fighter) (2006) Significantly, the movie breaks the standard revenge model of the martial arts film genre to embrace the grace and restraint that underlines the philosophy of wushu (the comprehensive term for martial arts that means 'avert fighting' or 'stop war').‐
Read More | Posted Sep 17, 2006
C- 32% The Black Dahlia (2006) Excessive exposition, subplots, and secondary characters distract from the title story about the barbaric 1947 murder of Elizabeth Short, a striving 22-year-old actress at odds with the treacherous streets of Los Angeles.‐
Read More | Posted Sep 14, 2006
B+ 68% Hollywoodland (2006) The genius of the movie is the way in which it explores possible explanations for Reeve's death before providing the audience with a bit of Reeves' silent home footage that Louis Simo carefully watches for telling subtext.‐
Read More | Posted Sep 1, 2006
B- 61% Crank (2006) Relying upon an abbreviated and accelerated plotline informed by Rudolph Mate's 1949 film noir classic D.O.A., Crank is a hard-R-rated chase-and-smash movie fixed around Euro action movie magnet Jason Statham.‐
Read More | Posted Sep 1, 2006
B+ 73% The Illusionist (2006) There is a formal reverence for the unspoken loyalty between Eisenheim and Sophie that elegantly expounds on the period aspects of the story to create an atmosphere of timeless devotion and uncommon humility.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2006
C 37% Accepted (2006) "Accepted" falls short of mining "National Lampoon's Animal House" brand of humor because it doesn't relate the relationships of its characters to their kooky behaviors.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2006
C- 68% World Trade Center (2006) Oliver Stone has gone against his famous character to make a syrupy and gruelingly flat cinematic ode to two brave policemen (John McLoughlin and William Jimeno)...‐
Read More | Posted Aug 9, 2006
C- 19% Step Up (2006) The dubious concept of blending ballet with hip-hop dancing is explored only as far as line dance choreography will allow in this cliché-riddled romance that coasts on the strength of its charismatic leads...‐
Read More | Posted Aug 9, 2006
B+ 85% The Descent (2006) "The Descent" succeeds thoroughly as a horror film, based on the filmmakers' diligent attention to fundamental genre elements.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2006
C 40% Scoop (2006) As writer, director and actor Allen borrows so liberally from himself that anyone familiar with his movies will experience twinges of déjà vu in nearly every other scene.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 24, 2006
D+ 25% Lady in the Water (2006) Apologists for the categorically inadequate M. Night Shyamalan have their work cut out defending yet another cinematic killjoy from the 'auteur' whose high box office receipts do not reflect the ineptitude of his filmmaking skills.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 19, 2006
C 20% You, Me and Dupree (2006) You, Me and Dupree is a situation comedy that subsists purely on vibe, namely Owen Wilson's ever-boyish vibe of an innocence that has overstayed its welcome long into adulthood.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 12, 2006
B- 67% A Scanner Darkly (2006) Richard Linklater sticks to the narrative flow of Philip K. Dick's novel without embellishing it with current sociopolitical realities that the book foreshadowed.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2006
A- 75% Superman Returns (2006) "Superman Returns" is a sumptuous cinematic experience where its necessary spectacle never takes a front seat to the drama's emotional core...‐
Read More | Posted Jun 27, 2006
C- 35% The Lake House (2006) While the movie isn't as bad as its dubious trailer portends, it suffers terribly from a truncated narrative puzzle device that connects two lovers from different eras via an old-fashioned mailbox at a lake house.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 27, 2006
C+ 37% The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) Padded with relatively unknown actors, "Tokyo Drift" is more of an actors' showcase than fully fleshed-out movie.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2006
C- 82% A Prairie Home Companion (2006) "A Prairie Home Companion" is a cringe-worthy Robert Altman movie because it lacks all traces of the director's former glory. You could blame Garrison Keillor but that would be giving him too much credit.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 4, 2006
A 93% An Inconvenient Truth (2006) Director Davis Guggenheim expands Gore's highly polished multimedia lecture into dramatic form with personal footage of Gore that exemplifies his 40-year commitment to a subject that is consuming our Earth.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 1, 2006
B 58% X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) "X-Men: The Last Stand" is a comic book movie that crams in a stunning number of characters while still managing to map out significant emotional underpinnings.‐
Read More | Posted May 24, 2006
B- 75% Over the Hedge (2006) The metaphoric subtext is as clear as the apocalyptic destruction that befalls Gladys' treasured suburban home. All of the humans have gone nuts.‐
Read More | Posted May 21, 2006
A- 33% Poseidon (2006) From Wolfgang Petersen's majestic 360-degree pan of the enormous modern-day luxury cruise ship that will be capsized by a 150-foot tidal wave to his deliberately caliginous closing shot, "Poseidon" is a nerve-wracking thrill ride.‐
Read More | Posted May 9, 2006
B+ 70% Mission: Impossible III (2006) "Mission Impossible: III" is a perfect summer blockbuster movie.‐
Read More | Posted May 5, 2006
C- 90% United 93 (2006) Ultimately, United 93 is a regurgitation of suspicious media-fueled speculation about events on an airplane that we know very little about.‐
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2006
B- 84% Akeelah and the Bee (2006) "Akeelah And The Bee" is a movie that parents should be happy to let their kids go see on their own; they just might start reading the dictionary.‐
Read More | Posted Apr 21, 2006
B+ 20% The Wild (2006) Obvious plot similarities to Dreamworks animated kid's movie "Madagascar" haunts this superior Disney produced CG animated story about a group of New York Zoo animals that go for an unexpected boat trip to an African jungle.‐
Posted Apr 11, 2006
C- 35% Ask the Dust (2006) No one gets away unscathed in Robert Towne's overblown attempt at transfiguring John Fante's novel to film.‐
Read More | Posted Apr 9, 2006