Derek Smith

Derek Smith
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
I am 26 years old and a recent college graduate working/living in San Diego. I have always loved movies, but the obsession took over about 5 years ago. Aside from movies, I enjoy reading, sports, and hanging out with friends.
Favorites:
http://www.cinematicreflections.com/Masterpieces.html
Location: San Diego
Official Websites: apolloguide.com

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
2.5/4 94% The Mitchells vs. The Machines (2021) While the film certainly lays out the dangers of technology run amok, it also sees its power to connect people. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 21, 2021
2.5/4 94% Together Together (2021) Ed Helms and Patti Harrison's wonderful rapport helps to keep the film grounded in the recognizably real. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 18, 2021
3/4 100% Hope (Håp) (2021) Maria Sødahl's considers the extreme emotions provoked by a medical emergency with an impressive force of clarity. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
94% The Man Who Sold His Skin (2021) Art, commerce, and immigration are inextricably bound in Kaouther Ben Hania's playful and gently moving, if uneven, film. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2021
1.5/4 36% Outside the Wire (2021) The film's arguments against endless war end up seeming more than a bit disingenuous. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 13, 2021
2/4 91% Bloody Hell (2020) The film's manic blend of gore and relentlessly cheeky comedy eventually leads to diminished returns. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 11, 2021
3/4 98% The Reason I Jump (2021) The film weaves together the stories of five mostly nonverbal autistic teens to present a rich tapestry of the autistic experience. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2021
2.5/4 78% Greenland (2020) There are enough left turns here to allow us to shake the impression that we've been to this rodeo before. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 13, 2020
3/4 100% 76 Days (2020) The documentary may be the defining portrait of the dawning of the Covid-19 pandemic. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2020
2/4 70% Embattled (2020) The film muddies its sense of moral righteousness by suggesting that violence and vengeance can only be defeated by more of the same. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 15, 2020
3/4 100% Coded Bias (2020) The documentary dives down the rabbit hole to chillingly, comprehensively expose how algorithms can perpetuate bias in often unforeseen and unjust ways. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2020
3/4 100% His House (2020) Throughout, Remi Weekes forcefully, resonantly ties the film's terror to the inner turmoil of his characters. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 26, 2020
3/4 97% Sound of Metal (2020) Darius Marder's film captures, with urgency and tenderness, just how enticing the residue of the past can be. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 20, 2020
2.5/4 62% The Secrets We Keep (2020) The film is ultimately too tidy to embrace anything truly startling or unexpected, either stylistically or narratively. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 14, 2020
3.5/4 96% The Disciple (2020) Chaitanya Tamhane gives full dimension to the rich, complex, and sometimes contradictory nature of the relationship between disciple and guru. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2020
2.5 97% Buoyancy (2020) The film never quite pushes beyond the archetypal nature of its scenario to fully unearth its characters' psychological turmoil. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2020
3.5/4 96% Feels Good Man (2020) That the democratization of the internet has opened a doorway for fascist ideologies to openly quash democratic ones is an irony that isn't lost on the film. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 30, 2020
2/4 90% Words on Bathroom Walls (2020) The film reeks of the extremely idealistic notions of young love that plague many a YA adaptation. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 19, 2020
2/4 70% The One and Only Ivan (2020) The charitable representation of Bryan Cranston's character greatly diminishes the emotional resonance of the film's dramatic turns in the final act. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 18, 2020
1/4 61% Project Power (2020) The film is an unwieldy array of muddled ideas that never gel together into a cohesive whole. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2020
2.5/4 87% Get Duked! (2020) A taut genre exercise that delivers enough surprises and cleverly timed bits of humor for its sometimes familiar, uneven narrative beats to play an original tune. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2020
2/4 86% I Used to Go Here (2020) The film is almost sadistically driven to turn a woman's trip down memory lane into fodder for cringe humor. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2020
3/4 93% We Are Little Zombies (2020) The film is a kaleidoscopic portrait of a world where emotions are accessed and revealed primarily through digital intermediaries. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2020
1.5/4 48% My Spy (2020) Peter Segal's film is pulled in so many different directions that it comes to feel slack. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2020
1.5/4 No Score Yet Run with the Hunted (2020) Some of the film's narrative threads are frustratingly unresolved, while others are wrapped up in arbitrary fashion. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2020
2/4 77% Military Wives (2020) The film seems almost content to have you forget about everything that inspired it in the first place. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2020
3/4 100% Driveways (2020) The film's devotion to the belief that kindness can be a balm for almost any hurt is deeply moving. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted May 3, 2020
2.5/4 87% 1BR (2020) The film gives palpable expression to the sense of hopelessness felt by those who fall under the control of cults. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2020
3/4 100% Nafi's Father (Baamum Nafi) (2019) The film vibrantly articulates all that's lost when people are held under the draconian decree of warlords. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 1, 2020
2.5/4 100% Slay the Dragon (2020) The film is suitably direct, clear-eyed, and exhaustive in documenting the massive impacts that gerrymandering has, particularly on communities of color. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 9, 2020
2/4 64% Hope Gap (2020) So many grandiose tactics portend a grander revelation than the film's otherwise low-key three-hander delivers. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
2/4 38% Wendy (2020) Wendy veers awkwardly and aimlessly between tragedy and jubilance, never accruing any lasting emotional impact. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 23, 2020
3/4 98% Corpus Christi (Boze cialo) (2020) It's within the murky realm of self-doubt and spiritual anxiety that it's at its most audacious and compelling. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 16, 2020
2.5/4 74% The Photograph (2020) The film is at its best when it's focused on the euphoria and tribulations of its central couple. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2020
3/4 64% Gretel & Hansel (2020) Beginning with the reversed names in its title, the film announces itself as a distinctly feminine spin on the Grimm fairy tale. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2020
1.5/4 60% The Last Full Measure (2020) The film largely evades any perspectives that might question the institutions that put our soldiers in harm's way. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 20, 2020
1/4 14% Dolittle (2020) Dolittle's inability to completely develop any of its characters reduces the film to all pomp and no circumstance. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 15, 2020
1/4 21% Like a Boss (2020) Its inconsistent, half-baked characterizations would be more forgivable were they at least in the service of some inspired comedy. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 8, 2020
2/4 84% Ip Man 4: The Finale (2019) The film is overstuffed with characters and subplots that ultimately have little to do with Ip Man and his legacy. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2019
1.5/4 38% Black Christmas (2019) Sophia Takal's remake elides the thorny, complicated nature of the original's sexual politics. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2019
2/4 50% The Wolf Hour (2019) The film is all surface, and its depiction of trauma becomes increasingly exploitative and hollow as it moves along. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 1, 2019
2/4 67% The Christmas Chronicles (2018) In the end, the film succumbs to the tropes and emotional contrivances of the family melodrama at its core, ending up as a serviceable yet mostly forgettable addition to the already overstuffed genre of holiday-themed films. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2019
1.5/4 81% Cyrano, My Love (Edmond) (2019) The film is imbued with an airless blend of buoyant comedy and soap-operatic backstage drama that recalls Shakespeare in Love. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2019
1.5/4 45% The Addams Family (2019) Until the finale, the film tirelessly hammers home the importance of being true to yourself, yet its ultimate resolution, one of relatively uneasy compromise, confuses even that simple point. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2019
.5/4 No Score Yet 10 Minutes Gone (2019) Almost every element of the film has been seemingly engineered to be the ne plus ultra of slapdash ineptitude. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 25, 2019
2.5/4 95% Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins (2019) The film is at its best when its focus remains on Ivins's fierce commitment to her ideals and willingness to speak her mind. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 1, 2019
3/4 96% Ága (2019) Milko Lazarov seems driven to record the inner workings of a singular slice of Inuit culture before it goes the way of the reindeer. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 28, 2019
2/4 42% Vita & Virginia (2019) The film frequently falls back on the stately demeanor of countless other historical biopics and period pieces. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2019
2.5/4 45% 47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019) The film wrings white-knuckle tension less through jump scares than from the darkness of a seemingly infinite void. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 14, 2019
1.5/4 43% The Art of Racing in the Rain (2019) The film peddles in the simplistic anthropomorphization that's become a hackneyed trope in numerous Hollywood dog-centric movies. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 6, 2019