501 posts categorized "Women's Cinema"

January 30, 2023

BLONDE

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

Welcome!

This ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel.

Get cool rewards when you click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.

Thanks a lot acorns!

Your kind generosity keeps the reviews coming!

Cole Smithey on Patreon



ColeSmithey.comStraight masterpiece.

Screenwriter/director Andrew Dominik's filmic adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates's 2000 fictionalized novel of the same title serves as a trenchant indictment of capitalism, the media, and of an incoherent American patriarchy that knows nothing but abuse.

Ana de Armas is uncanny in her fearless portrayal of Hollywood's most iconic actress.

Stunner.

ColeSmithey.com

It's a coincidence that in the same year that Austin Butler embodied Elvis Presley with an otherworldly performance of rigor and inspiration, Ana de Armas hits a similar if not more profound height of authenticity.

Elvis and Marilyn were each prisoners of their enormous fame/marketability.

ColeSmithey.com

Ana de Armas may just be the finest actor of our time.

Unforgettable.

Spellbinding.

ColeSmithey.com

Through the darkness and pain of a constant stream of traumas, Norma Jeane Baker battled demons near and remembered with a sharp intellect that Andrew Dominik keenly exposes through Ana de Armas's high-wire performance.

Indisputably, Andrew Dominik is a true master artist of Cinema.

The proof is in the pudding.

Gracefully cuts quick to the bone.

ColeSmithey.com

Audiences familiar with Dominik's past films, "Chopper" (2000), "The Assassination of Jesse James by the coward Robert Ford" (2007), and "Killing Them Softly" (2012), might have an inkling for the depth of visually dynamic storytelling on display in "Blonde."

ColeSmithey.com

"Blonde" functions as a feminist narrative that digs in dark corners of 20th century American reality and ideology where beauty is a trashy fad object to be worshiped, reviled, used up and thrown away.

Rigorous feminist think piece. You bet.

Joyce Carol Oates was no slouch.

ColeSmithey.com

So, if you're real serious, read Joyce Carol Oates's novel "Blonde," because you can.

And, besides, Joyce Carol Oates is still alive at the time of this writing, and even gave Ana de Armas

props for her exquisite portrayal of Norma Jeane Baker/Marilyn Monroe.

Right on.

ColeSmithey.com

Norma Jeane Mortenson revolted against the cold indifference of those who imagined they owned her, which was just about everyone.

Rebel.

ColeSmithey.com

It was a herculean effort that could not be sustained for very long.

What we are left with is just a memory of a rare, fragile, talented young woman being bought and sold into modern-day slavery under the guise of Hollywood.

ColeSmithey.com

These days people give their lives away on social media and YouTube for pennies. 

People's lives are reduced to content.

This phenomenal film is not that.

This is Cinema.

Take your content and shove it.

ColeSmithey.com

Rated NC-17. 166 mins.

5 Stars“ColeSmithey.com“

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

January 17, 2023

WILDCAT

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

Welcome!

This ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel.

Get cool rewards when you click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.

Thanks a lot acorns!

Your kind generosity keeps the reviews coming!

Cole Smithey on Patreon



ColeSmithey.comMore Direct Cinema than documentary, "Wildcat" takes an invisible approach to capturing its unfolding narrative.

Melissa Lesh and co-director Trevor Beck Frost spent several years working in the Peruvian rainforest with American wildlife rehabilitation specialist Samantha Zwicker and British Afghanistan war veteran Harry Turner.

ColeSmithey.com

Samantha and Harry have what it takes to handle living in the middle of the jungle. They make for a badass team. Naturally, carnal romance enters their entwined lives.

ColeSmithey.com

Both Samantha and Harry do battle with personal demons, his from war experiences, hers from growing up with an abusive alcoholic father.

Harry struggles with depression.

ColeSmithey.com

Samantha is more of a trooper. She doesn't wallow in the past.

ColeSmithey.com
Raising a lost ocelot cub for the 18 months it takes for the fierce creature to be released into the wild, allows for a similar trajectory for our complex leading characters, Samantha and Harry.

ColeSmithey.com

This is the first time such a rescue and release has ever been attempted.

No rule book for this shit.

ColeSmithey.com

Suffice it to say "Wildcat" is a deeply personal film that makes a transparent comparison between the jungles of Peru, and the jungle of society that we all traverse.

ColeSmithey.com

Challenging, thought-provoking, and suspenseful, "Wildcat" is a lot of movie.

ColeSmithey.com

Hearts will be broken.

ColeSmithey.com

Hearts will be healed.

ColeSmithey.com

Long live the wildcat.

Rated R. 106 mins.

5 Stars“ColeSmithey.com“

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

January 15, 2023

TO CATCH A THIEF — CLASSIC FILM PICK

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

Welcome!

This ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel.

Get cool rewards when you click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.

Thanks a lot acorns!

Your kind generosity keeps the reviews coming!

Cole Smithey on Patreon



ColeSmithey.comAlfred Hitchcock goes on a full LGBTQ romp in this elegant romantic suspense classic.

Cary Grant is at his most swishy as John "The Cat" Robie, an ex-pat French Resistance fighter turned cat burglar. 

Check out Robie serving Quiche Lorraine to John Williams's  insurance agent high above the French Riviera at Robie's villa.

Gay code baby.

There's a reason Robie has stayed single all these years.

The lacking sexual chemistry between Grant and Kelly is appropriate for their opportunist characters.

ColeSmithey.com

It also serves to make the point that we are watching movie stars acting as if they are falling in love.

We can lean into Hitchcock's artistic flair for artificiality.

The fact that Grace Kelly's Frances character makes the first move when she kisses Robie at her hotel door, speaks volumes.

ColeSmithey.com

Robie may or may not have retired from stealing jewelry. Either way, a lot of fancy loot is going missing from Cannes Hotel rooms.

ColeSmithey.com

Hitchcock's filmic love letter to the Riviera features spectacular views of Cannes.

ColeSmithey.com

Check out the ever-impressive Carlton Hotel on the croisette, or the legendary Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc.

ColeSmithey.com

Lovely, but nothing can compare to Grace Kelly in her role as Frances Stevens, a husband-hunting nouveau riche object of desire.

ColeSmithey.com

Hitchcock gives Douglas Sirk a run for his money.

If you like costumes, this is your picture.

Glamor, light, and color explode from every frame of this delightful movie.

ColeSmithey.com

"To Catch A Thief" may be an atypical film for Hitchcock's sardonic oeuvre due to its lighthearted nature, but "To Catch a Thief" is a movie to sit back and savor whenever the mood strikes.

You'll always get a great cinematic kiss.

ColeSmithey.com
Rated PG. 106 mins.

5 Stars“ColeSmithey.com“

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

Featured Video

SMART NEW MEDIA® Custom Videos

COLE SMITHEY’S MOVIE WEEK

COLE SMITHEY’S CLASSIC CINEMA

Throwback Thursday


Podcast Series