Saturday, October 01, 2016

A Poet Among Critics

Richard Jack Smith writes poems with ease
about movies designed to please.

Plus even some he thinks fall flat
and keep him from tipping his hat.

A fine poet among critics,
rhymes and images he does mix.

His reviews earn two thumbs up
and a poetry Loving Cup!

Here’s a tip of my hat to Richard Jack Smith for his amazing new book, A Poet Among Critics. However, in the interest of full disclosure, I have to mention that the poetry bug also bit me – and is forcing me to use poetry in film reviews too. But Richard’s book includes so many more poems than mine! And films of almost every genre are represented.

Because my favorite genre is “Musicals,” I’m delighted to see movies like Top Hat and Burlesque included. Next to musicals, I enjoy thrillers. Happily, the book also contains Richard’s unique poetic take on films like Nick of Time, Phone Booth and Psycho. Other genres are not neglected.  Sci-fi flicks, horror movies, Disney offerings, comedies, dramas, popular franchises and classics like Citizen Kane, King Kong and The General also receive careful attention.

Richard’s use of lush language helps make his poems come to life. Such remarkable visions he creates! For example, below are the last few lines of his perceptive, artistic Top Hat film poem.

Ginger Rogers, what a beauty!
Her moves creating ecstasy.
Black shapes upon room tone grey.
Suits and dresses so elegant, they say.

A cigarette held just so
before dancing on tip-toe.
A woman’s cheeky eyes
that love defies.
Leading to a romantic beat
and the audience cheering on their feet.

Those well-chosen words conjure up the 1935 Ginger and Fred Astaire musical romp, for sure. And A Poet Among Critics overflows with that kind of poetry magic. Well done, Richard!

NOTE: Richard Jack Smith writes film and soundtrack reviews for ReelTalk Movie Reviews. He is the author of two other books, Magical Movie Moments and Incidental Gold. For more information about A Poet Among Critics, please e-mail Richard at 

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