The Reeler

Recent Comments

FILM ON THE WEB

A Girl and a Gun
A_Film_By
Ain't It Cool News
Alliance of Women Film Journalists
Anne Thompson
Art Fag City
ArtFlickChick
Better Than Fudge
Big Picture Big Sound
Bitter Cinema
Blank Screen
Blogumentary
Brian Flemming
Bright Lights
Celluloid Eyes
CHUD
Chutry Experiment, The
Cinecultist
Cinema Confidential
Cinema Eye
Cinema-Scope
Cinemarati
Cinematical
CineMe
Coming Soon
Cool Cinema Trash
Cyndi Greening
Dark Horizons
Defamer
Drew's Blog-O-Rama
Errata
Esoteric Rabbit
Film Detail
Film Experience, The
Film Journal, The
Film Journey
Film Stew
Film Rotation
Flickhead
GreenCine Daily
Greg.org
Hacking Netflix
Hammer to Nail
High Sign, The
Hollywood Elsewhere
House Next Door, The
IFC Blog, The
In the Company of Glenn
IndieScene Movie Marketing Blog
indieWIRE.com
indieWIRE Blogs
Jay's Movie Blog
JoBlo's Movie Emporium
Kaiju Shakedown
Kamera
Kinoeye
Like Anna Karina's Sweater
Last Night with Riviera
Light Sleeper
Long Pauses
Looker
Masters of Cinema
Matt Zoller Seitz
Midnight Eye
Milk Plus
Mind Jack
Metaphilm
Movie Blog, The
Movie City Indie
Movie Hole, The
Movie Poop Shoot
New York Cool
NY Post Movie Blog
News of the Dead
No More Marriages!
Notes From Underdog
Out of Focus
Persistence of Vision
Pullquote
Queer Film Review
Reel Roundtable
ScreenGrab
Screen Rush
Screener (Film Journal Int.)
Screening the Past
Self-Styled Siren
Short Sheet, The
Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine Blog
Still in Motion
Stranger Song, The
They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?
Tisch Film Review
Twitch
Vince Keenan
World Film (at About.com)
You Know, For Film
Zoom-In

The Reeler Blog

Kyle Smith Masters the Allusion, If Not the Language

Because I woke up dying for a critic-news hat trick today, and because my crush on Kyle Smith has hardly abated since Friday's testicle-winched tandem of Blood Diamond and Off the Black reviews, I am slaving after hours to bring you the latest on Smith's mighty, wholly unexpected triumph of holiday literature, A Christmas Caroline. "The comic fantasy mixes the style elements and dating dilemmas of Sex and the City with a mystery involving characters created by (Dickens)," says the introduction, and to be sure, as excerpted Sunday in the Post, Smith's prose hums like the great novelist with his lips glued shut:

"Give to the world," Santa said in a soul baritone. He had set himself up in an urban gauntlet; to one side of him there was a long line of aluminum boxes dispensing crappy weekly newspapers; to the other there was a relic of a payphone and a bus shelter. To get to the street where purring taxis awaited, Caroline was obliged to squeeze past all these blocky, grimy forms and shimmy through the gap between Santa and the nearest newspaper box. Caroline had worn belts wider than this space.
"Give it up, pretty lady, give it up!" said Santa. "I'm not asking you to save the world. I just want your spare change."
"That beard looks flammable," said Caroline. "Maybe you should put out the cigarette."
Santa took a drag of his Newport Light and sighed. "Pretty lady," he said, stepping aside and doffing a red and white hat that looked like imitation polyester, "go in peace. But just remember that there are those who want, and that you didn't give even a token amount."

The "crappy weekly newspapers" are a nice touch from the frothy rightie, but "soul baritone"? "Give it up, pretty lady"? "Newport Light"? Thank God Smith's editor cut the line about Santa's old suit being "the faded pinkish-red of watermelon" -- you'd almost think Smith was describing a black man. Or maybe that's in the unabridged version? I'll never know.

Posted at December 11, 2006 6:15 PM

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.thereeler.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb-AjOOtIAl.cgi/271

Search The Reeler
Join the Mailing List

RSS Feed

Archives

Send a Tip