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About Me

Kyle Smith (Twitter: @rkylesmith) is critic-at-large for National Review, theater critic for The New Criterion and the author of the novels Love Monkey and A Christmas Caroline. Type a title in the box above to locate a review.

Buy Love Monkey for $4! "Hilarious"--Maslin, NY Times. "Exceedingly readable and wickedly funny romantic comedy"--S.F. Chronicle. "Loud and brash, a helluva lot of fun"--Entertainment Weekly. "Engaging romp, laugh-out-loud funny"-CNN. "Shrewd, self-deprecating, oh-so-witty. Smith's ruthless humor knows no bounds"--NPR

Buy A Christmas Caroline for $10! "for those who prefer their sentimentality seasoned with a dash of cynical wit. A quick, enjoyable read...straight out of Devil Wears Prada"--The Wall Street Journal

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  • Bailout Harry

    By Kyle | February 6, 2012

    It’s hard to think of Clint Eastwood as dishonest, isn’t it? But it’s either that or he’s just too dumb to realize his Super Bowl ad was an Obama campaign commercial. He denies here that the ad that David Axelrod and Michael Moore love and Karl Rove dislikes was pro-Obama..

    Consider the many left-leaning movies he’s made over the last 20 years, all of which came while Eastwood claimed to be a libertarian or at least a conservative. Maybe Clint just ordered up scripts from people he thought were good writers and didn’t notice the blatant liberal bias. Maybe he thought asking for a script from the guy who wrote “Milk” would provide a historically accurate and fair portrait of J.Edgar Hoover and would not sensationalize scurrilous transvestism rumors in any way, except by quite reasonably showing Hoover weeping at his mama’s death and putting on her dress. Previously I’ve thought he made all these movies because he loves winning Oscars and was willing to put that ahead of principle.

    UPDATE: Read the rest of this entry »

    Topics: Advertising, Barack Obama, Movies, Sports | 5 Comments »

    Converted to Cameron Crazy

    By Kyle | February 2, 2012

    My friend Rob Taub finds himself at a Duke basketball game, and finds the atmosphere surprisingly congenial….Please note that this post is not an endorsement of any team that may be archrival to the school of my adored spouse, whose non-affection for Duke is actually somewhat frightening. Don’t tell her I said that.

    Topics: Sports | No Comments »

    America’s Sport: The NFL

    By Kyle | December 18, 2011

    In my Sunday column, I consider why the NFL is the great unifier of Americans.

    Topics: Sports | 3 Comments »

    How Tim Tebow Responds to Trash Talk on the Field

    By Kyle | December 15, 2011

    “I respond with a ‘God bless you.’ If I’m really upset, I might throw out a ‘Jesus loves you.'”
    Also: his favorite movie is “Braveheart.”

    From an exclusive interview in today’s Post. Blessed be Tim.

    Topics: Sports | 1 Comment »

    The Tim Tebow “Problem”

    By Kyle | December 14, 2011

    What if he wins the Super Bowl? Obviously there will be a mass outbreak of gay-bashing and mosque-burning. Obviously.
    Stick it in their face, Tim. No one should tell you to shut up about being a Christian.

    Topics: Sports | 6 Comments »

    God’s Quarterback

    By Kyle | November 8, 2011

    I never thought much of Tim Tebow as an athlete but he seems to be making things happen with the Denver Broncos (and, as a Colts fan, I naturally want the Broncs to win more games than their fellow equines in Indy).
    Also, the more Bill Maher and the rest hate him — for no other reason than being a Christian — the more I love him. Commentary has more on Tebow’s outrage-inducing habits, such as kneeling in the end zone. Horrors! Wait a minute, don’t lots of Super Bowl winners thank God after the victory? Maybe we should bleep them out? Tebow is and ought to be free to kneel, genuflect, douse himself in holy water, paint a cross on his face, give the Black Power salute or say hurrah for Satan every time he crosses the goal line.

    The secularists and atheists (I’m one of the latter but not one of the former) always insisted that they weren’t anti-religion, they just didn’t want to see any tragic slippery-slope effects or be intimidated by (for instance) a creche in the public square (which has nothing to do with Congress making a law and is therefore obviously not proscribed by the First Amendment). The fact is, they in many cases aren’t pluralists and are simply hateful and intolerant toward religion, which they seek to stamp, humiliate and hound out of public life. As a result, with astonishing speed we evolve from a society from one in which the vast majority were pious true believers to one in which to be a Christian is to be assumed to be guilty of some sort of hate crime or at least beyond-the-pale weirdness. Soon, we’ll be hearing about how “sponsors won’t give endorsement deals to X because he’s controversial [i.e. religious].” Stick it in their face, Tim.

    Topics: Sports | 11 Comments »

    Colts Doomed

    By Kyle | September 7, 2011

    The Indianapolisites are pointedly declining to deny rumors that Peyton Manning is out for the season, so he’s probably out for the season. Right now they’re only copping to sitting him for Week One. I don’t expect the Colts to win more than four games without him. I do hope people pay attention and see how lousy the Colts, particularly their offensive line (which I expect to be the same or worse than last year) are without him. Take Tom Brady away from the Patriots, for instance, and replace him with a nobody like Cassell, and they’re still a very good team.

    Peyton is not the most valuable player in the league. He’s the most valuable player in the history of the league.

    Topics: Sports | 3 Comments »

    I Don’t Want to Think About Rex Ryan’s Meaty Calves

    By Kyle | August 2, 2011

    …But for those of you who do, Rex explains his hideous new leg tattoo over at the Post’s Jets blog.

    Topics: Sports | 3 Comments »

    NFL Lockout Over: A Good Thing?

    By Kyle | July 26, 2011

    As I’ve aged I’ve grown increasingly rational, or at least I think I have, and so I have mixed feelings about the end of the NFL lockout. The NFL is probably the primary source of irrationality on my part, and yet perhaps I have (as Churchill and Hitchens say of strong drink) gotten more out of it than it has gotten out of me.

    Why is being an NFL fan (or any kind of sports fan–but I’ve abandoned interest in all other sports including the Olympics, which is half sport and half patriotism) irrational? Because it imposes a cost (time — maybe lots and lots of time, in my case maybe six hours a week of watching and maybe another two hours of reading) and doesn’t pay you back in any way except emotionally, but those emotions are totally bogus and would, rationally, be resisted. I.e., I root for the Indianapolis Colts and care strongly about their fortunes even though I don’t know anyone on the team and no one on the team plays for it for any reason other than business ones. (I’ve also never lived in Indianapolis, or Baltimore, except for a coincidental fall I spent at Ft. Ben Harrison in Indy, but I’d argue that pretend civic ties are so bogus that you might as well root for whatever team catches your fancy regardless of geography. In other words, Johnny Damon doesn’t care whether he plays for the Yankees or Red Sox, so why should you?)
    As for the reward, while it delivers a small thrill to see the Colts win lots of games, elite teams are judged solely on how many Super Bowls they win and a variety of stumbles and ill winds have left them with only a single victory in the top game. And last year they weren’t even one of the ten best teams in the league, though it’s possible they could improve this year. At any rate, it seems unlikely that the Peyton Manning-led Colts will win another Super Bowl. I love to see virtue rewarded and am disappointed when it isn’t. By my reckoning there were at least two years when the Colts were the premier team in the league and failed to win the Super Bowl, plus maybe three more when they were close enough to being the best team that they had a not-insignificant chance of winning if a few breaks had gone their way. If they had won even one of these five instead of zero, Manning would have two rings and would be, I think, properly acknowledged as the revolutionary quarterback he is. So that would be satisfying. As it is, so many quarterbacks have won two or more Super Bowls that Manning is automatically lowered to the second rank, which saddens me. In the absolute sense, I suppose, it makes no difference: Manning is what he is, and no one can take that away from him. Moreover, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if, like Ronald Reagan, he went on to have a second career that placed his seemingly successful first one very much in the background.

    The onset of the NFL lockout so angered me (I couldn’t believe the owners seriously expected the players to take a huge pay cut, and in the event the players apparently won themselves a small raise) that I more or less banished it from my mind for the last four months, freeing up valuable brainspace for more important things. I regret having to re-dedicate a portion of my mind to what is almost certain to be an ultimately frustrating endeavor, with the accompanying wastage of more than 100 hours of my time over the next six months, all because of a thin hope for an (anyway) bogus and drug-like emotional payoff.

    But at least I’m not a Buffalo Bills fan.

    And if the Colts’ offensive line could somehow be as good as it was in the years when Tarik Glenn vaporized all comers on the blind side, who knows? I lapse into magical thinking….the drug starts to take effect….

    Topics: Sports | 7 Comments »

    Worst Halftime Show Ever?

    By Kyle | February 7, 2011

    Except for the Timberlake-Janet one, yeah, pretty much. These things used to be boring. Boring would been a huge improvement over last night.

    Topics: Sports | 2 Comments »

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