Nancy DeWolf Smith

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For 300 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 63% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 33% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Nancy DeWolf Smith's Scores

Average review score: 68
Highest review score: 100 Sherlock: Season 3
Lowest review score: 10 The Black Donnellys: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 15 out of 300
300 tv reviews
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Since the series was filmed partly aboard U.S. Navy vessels, aircraft and with other working equipment, when the big guns go off it looks and sounds satisfyingly earthshaking. Inevitably, some things are formulaic.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    You don't have to be a New Yorker to enjoy ESPN's eight-part miniseries, The Bronx is Burning, although it might help.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    One must be anesthetized for the series to have its desired effect of making us root for Underwood or at least feel suspense until each of his miniplots pans out to successful competition. Yet rapacious viewing will be numbing too, and not in a useful way.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Here's hoping that the strong whiff of sanctimony in the pilot of "Studio 60" is blown away by fresh air in future episodes.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    As beloved as Mr. Wilson is from “The Office,” as it is written the character of the curmudgeon Backstrom doesn’t seem trenchant enough to be memorably offensive or socially tart. Yet if enough viewers pray long enough for his evolution, they may be rewarded by taking other pleasures from the show.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The pilot moves along at a cracking pace, introducing new clues and characters and settings so fast that it's very tempting to sit back and enjoy the ride, ludicrous though some of it may be.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    After the male action sequences, alas, the feminine interludes tend to be soporific.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    No doubt Dollhouse will make a good computer game, although it looks like one already.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    "Jericho" doesn't pretend to be artistically risky, but it's got a scary and gripping theme in an age of terrorism and nuclear thuggery.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    [So far] the show has the elements of a gripping yarn.... But there was a vibe of something tedious when one of the kidnappers announced: "Today the bug is king"--and if Crisis really goes there, some of us will be tempted to run away.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Despite some funny and even pungent moments, in fact, Doll & Em is so gentle that you can barely feel anything.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Fortunately, there are some laughs in Hello Ladies and skewerings of the vapidness that runs like a river beneath the glitzy surface of show business.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Although the first few episodes can be slow going and are inert in spots, the series finds a rhythm by episode four, as it develops characters and side themes to remind us just how dark those dark ages were.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Ultimately, though, it's not what happens to the folks on this show that is so revealing. It's what goes on in our own minds as we watch and listen to them try to navigate the shoals of racial differences.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The Casual Vacancy was riveting while it lasted. When it was over, though, I wanted to stick a fork in my face.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    All of this might seem silly if it weren't for Mr. Goldblum.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Showtime's new comedy series la la land can be torture to watch, whether you end up choking with laughter or cringing at the sight of well-meaning folks being made fools of.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The humor in Community is so soft that it will likely please only the tenderhearted. The river that runs through it is a comforting one, though.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Unfolding simultaneously in two distinct worlds, the series has an enchanting premise, even if it plods at times when it should sparkle and soar.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Over a mere three episodes for this season, it is difficult to know most of the characters. Some, like Sir Hallam, seem only half-drawn. Agnes's sister Lady Persie (Claire Foy)--a debutante who's become a fascist fangirl--is repellant in an uninteresting way. There are some plot touches, involving minorities, that clang as too modern. Then again, when the Duke of Kent cries over his brother Edward's abdication--"It's the sort of thing that happens in Romania"--memories of what was so entrancing about the original show come wafting back.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The language in "Huff" is still graphic and foul. What redeems it, as always, is the artful acting and occasional small scenes of quiet beauty.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The show confirms almost everything we already knew or suspected about local TV stations. It is amusing.... What is less clear is whether some of them are as spectacularly clueless as they appear to be.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Once Matthew Perry and (especially) Thomas Lennon kick in as the slovenly Oscar Madison and the fastidious Felix Unger, respectively, their timing and physicality, and some tart writing, pull the show up like a water-skier behind a motorboat.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Mr. Ramsay is not quite the raging beast in "Hotel Hell" that he is in his own kitchens.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    You don't have to be under 30 to enjoy this. It's no more, or less, ridiculous than ABC's massively-hyped hit about sex, love and secrets among housewives and other oldsters.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    For those of us who can't be bothered to decipher the mumbo jumbo, let alone take it seriously, there is diversion enough in each episode's discrete inner story, which doesn't require a mental decoder ring.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    While little of this is boring, the movie only sizzles and sparks when it jumps out of flashback mode and into the 1950s "present," with Ms. MacLaine as a slightly cranky and tottering but totally grand old dame.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    This singing competition is like a hybrid of MTV's "Silent Library" and "Jackass." If you hated those or don't know what they are, consider yourself warned.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Writers (and co-executive producers, among others) Mark Cullen and Robb Cullen have an uneven and not 100% original touch here. But sitcom magic is difficult to make, and at least Mr. Robinson has a few tricks in its bag.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    While there's a nice ensemble cast, Mr. Samberg is meant to steal the show and he does--although not often in a good way.... But the nearly laugh-less pilot of Brooklyn Nine-Nine is like one of those SNL sketches that doesn't work but you don't mind too much because it's possible the next sketch will be hilarious.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Despite its updated gloss and cast, in fact, Raising the Bar doesn't really break a mold.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    There is some suspense here, even if it is mainly because the violence when it comes is so swift and sickening. But the show still feels slack.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Watching NBC’s Dracula isn’t always easy, and not only because its Dublin-born star, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, is often compelled to speak with a cartoonish American accent.... The biggest distraction of all may be the series’ sociopolitical construct, seemingly ripped from the headlines about Occupy Wall Street, as told to climate-change zealots and written up by Dalton Trumbo.... To its credit, this one isn’t camp and doesn’t clown around.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The upside is that the first few episodes (of nine) may well draw you in, along with some wonderful performances.... If only there were more such gems in this particular crown.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    It seems determined to eschew high style in favor of a flat, dark world that's appropriately grim yet also numbingly static.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The main thing in its favor is the chemical tension between its stars. That may not be enough, but it's something.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    It's a good refresher course, but not a hugely gripping one.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Magic City is a little slow at getting under our figurative skin.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    This film seems to want to scream, but never does, taking instead a mildly passive-aggressive approach to the objects under its microscope while following a trail of inquiry that meanders without ever arriving.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    [Why do] The husbands come across as total bums? Not just because of the way they lounge around all day moaning about how hard (sniff) it is (sniff) not to be able to provide for their family. They dress like bums, too.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The series might be more fun if "jobmother" Hayley Taylor didn't have to stop each time she utters a harsh truth and comfort an angry or weeping spouse.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Yes, it's all fairly formulaic.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The miniseries itself never quite reaches dramatic liftoff. Could be the know-how-it-ends curse of biopics at work. Or perhaps it's because it is so difficult to spare time and emotion for a couple of punks.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The result is ridiculous; but it's far more amusing than Hollywood Squares, which is where other formerly famous go to die.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Nothing much new here, although there's always another case for the audience to watch Laura solve.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Kings, which also serves up melodrama and mystical happenings, is far more ambitious [than Aaron Spellings' shows]. Yet it can have the effect of a real sleep potion.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Although the theme of toxic corporate greed is still there, the elongating of the story into many hours and the flattening of some mysteries for clarity on television may annoy devotees of the feature film.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    [The show is] so tame, in fact, that viewers may be forgiven for hoping, against their better instincts, that things get a little wilder, if not more wanton, down the road.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    There is a lot that is ridiculous here.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Amid memorable villains, Dickens always gave us someone to like and root for. It's hard to find anyone to cheer on here.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    After just one episode, I was interested enough to make a mental note to watch the final one someday, just to see who won and what the race was all about. People with more time on their hands and a tolerance for utter implausibility may choose to make the whole journey.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    If only the formula didn't require the 6-foot, seven-inch Mr. Jones to hug so many sobbing thankful owners, with apparent tears in his own eyes. He's more fun when he's beastly.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Sex Box breaks no meaningful boundaries in its first two episodes. The average music video is more titillating.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Ms. Hunt gets some humorous lines, and the banter between partners Callen and Hanna can make them seem like a new-age Starsky and Hutch.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    This light-as-a-feather comedy can be fun.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Much of this is utter nonsense. Life at a real fertility clinic is certainly a lot more humdrum, with fewer sexy nurses and doctors, a lower success record and longer debates about which clients to treat.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The production has a satisfyingly brooding, ominous look and it's possible to see the basic appeal for role-players and other fans of a realm that provides a limitless playing field for their own imaginations. Thrones also has wolf pups, which is always cool. But then we're back to the familiar favorites of the infantile.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Heartbeat does have moments that are satisfying emotionally. Yet the TV trope of the hospital with its motley cast of dedicated caregivers--the contemporary trajectory goes from “St. Elsewhere” to “ER” to “Grey’s Anatomy”--is difficult to riff on in a fresh way. So surgeon Dr. Alexandra Panettiere ( Melissa George) has to jump the shark by being a superwoman.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The characters are so vapid and thinly drawn that they glide like silhouettes through the minimalist stylings of a series crafted without affect.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    If you can view The Company's as a basic thriller, and ignore its gaffes, you'll find entertainment here.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Mr. Coogan makes a perfect Thom, since he is a master of drollery and his expressive face can telegraph defeat and sulky defiance at the same time. There are even some tentatively humorous moments here.... But few of the jokes feel modern, let alone witty.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Among Hallmark’s 12 new holiday movies this year, A Royal Christmas may not be the brightest bulb on the tree, if only because the story is so underpowered by original ideas.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    [It] leaves only the flashes of comedic brilliance, and even they don't light up the sky very often.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Tut
    A flaccid script leaves both men without much to work with, however, and the rings of black kohl around their eyes make them look like silent-movie stars in a “Saturday Night Live” skit.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    It's all done in an over-the-top, low-budget sort of way.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    In other words, deconstructionists of the world, there is nothing here for you. Nor, it must be said, for anyone who is not entertained by family-friendly fare. Perhaps future episodes will get down and dirty. So far, however, the series is straight as an arrow.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Sometimes it works, and we do get to see the already languorous Mr. Duchonvy act like he’s on an acid trip. Much of the time, though, this show set in the era of LSD feels more like a dose of Thorazine.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    For the most part, Grace of Monaco is a series of vignettes notable for odd scene hopping and stilted acting. But the ending is worth hanging around for.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Truth be told, Game Change does not make anyone look good.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Judging only by the results of the first episode, the crowd that rules by voting here is more easily excited by entrepreneurs with sappy slogans than by the ones with sound business plans.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Nancy DeWolf Smith
    The task of holding things together under this assault and others will fall to the amiable tour manager, Bill (Luke Wilson, awkwardly cast as a Lothario) and the production manager, Shelli (Carla Gugino)--who are supposed to have some chemistry between them but don’t seem to spark. ... Almost crushed beneath the farce are small moments that seem genuine.

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