Ralph Breaks the Internet
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
Log in with Facebook
Forgot your password?
Don't have an account? Sign up here
and the Terms and Policies,
and to receive email from Rotten Tomatoes and Fandango.
Already have an account? Log in here
Please enter your email address and we will email you a new password.
No consensus yet.
Tomatometer Not Available...
No consensus yet.
All Critics (8)
| Fresh (8)
| Rotten (0)
| DVD (4)
Smithereens is an unflinching look at a moment in time that is now looked at with rose-colored glasses.
If Smithereens feels like a first labor of love, it's even more endearing for it, stylistically akin to early titles by John Waters.
Wren's shallow cynicism and willingness to exploit others ultimately exposes her own vulnerability. Deeply unlikable, she remains sympathetic, both perpetrator and victim of the meat grinder that is the city.
Susan Seidelman is perhaps most readily known for her 1985 Madonna vehicle Desperately Seeking Susan, but it is in Smithereens that its more famous successor took its low-budget, rawly independent first steps.
It's as unsparing a sketch of twentysomething life in New York City as American independent cinema has yet offered.
Serves as a time capsule for NYC's punk rock scene in the '80s.
Susan Seidelman's feature debut, the first American indie to be shown at the Cannes Film Festival, put New York's East Village sensibility onscreen by examining issues of identity, desire and self-fulfillment from a distinctly female perspective.
A worthwhile, if depressing, debut film from writer/director Susan Seidelman.
Susan Berman (IMDB indicates she has just seven acting credits in her career, stretched across 25 years) plays Wren, a feisty, curly-haired scenester. She seems somewhat tied to New York club culture (the Peppermint Lounge is prominently used as a location), but has no real commitment to the music and people beyond how much she can exploit them for financial support.
She has no income, drifts from friend to friend (whoever will take her) and unconvincingly lies about her homeless poverty. The heart of the plot is her pursuit of two men: a sweet newcomer from Montana who's living in his decrepit van (Brad Rinn) and a struggling rocker (real-life musician Richard Hell, who's quite solid as an actor).
It's interesting to view "Smithereens" in the context of other early-'80s films about young, trendy women (including Seidelman's big-budget follow-up, "Desperately Seeking Susan"). Wren's initial entrance (confidently plastering flyers with her face around the subway) suggests a spunky, independent, charismatic John Hughes heroine. Someone we'll fall in love with. So, it's a disturbing twist to discover that she's basically, well, a jerk. The girl is going nowhere fast, and there's no reason for anyone to care.
Underground legends the Feelies dominate the score, though two Hell songs appear too. A forgotten group called the Nitecaps also performs on camera. In the closing minutes, a young, skinny Chris Noth appears for a split-second as a transvestite hooker.
The main character of this movie reminds me of the main character of Cabaret, they're both self destructive women looking for love in the wrong places. The whole movie, especially the end, is really sad, but inevitable. This movie doesn't get very far into exploring this character, it just kinda lingers. It's not bad, though, it's just okay.
There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.