Thursday, March 28, 2013

A Week of Kevin Smith, Part Six - "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back"


Now it's time for what could easily be Kevin Smith's most out there comedy: Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. It goes without saying that I adore this movie. Actually, I guess it doesn't go without saying if you don't know me. So, let me just say it; I love this movie!

I once had a friend say to me about this film, "It's just one 90-minute long gay joke." I didn't have the heart to point out that he ripped that line off from the movie itself, in which, in very Smithian self-referential fashion, a character refers to the movie-within-the-movie with that very line. You see, kids, filmmakers aren't the only ones capable of being hacks out there.

Movie critics are some of the biggest hacks. And I'm not just referring to big name critics. Critics of all variety are prone to being idiot rip-off artists who can't originate an opinion of their own. And this dear friend said this all the way back in my high school days, when the earliest of moronic blogging movie critics (like myself) were just starting.

This movie gets hate just for the sake of hate. And much of the internet opinion of this film comes from those lovely days when those "elite" few on those forums had movie discussions all to themselves. So, thanks to hack critics, this movie has a bad rep.

Now, don't get me wrong, I know a great many people who legitimately don't like this movie. Many of them don't particularly care for Kevin Smith films in general. And even those who do, but still don't like this movie, have gripes that are fair. But the weird sort of virulent hate I've seen for Smith and this film (and Mallrats, and Zack and Miri) goes to a weird place, and it's those jerks who are the hack critics.

But, before I get too ranty about critics, I should talk about the movie itself, and what I like about it.

I love the characters Jay and Silent Bob. They've always appealed to me and watching them anymore gives me the same sense of affection, combined with a sense of nostalgia that just warms my heart. While they may or may not, according to one's own individual tastes, have the qualities to carry their own movie, for me, I enjoy seeing them on their solo journey.

This film, out of all of Smith's films, had some of the best laugh out loud moments, from the "Who would pay to see a movie about Jay and Silent Bob?" to "The sign on the back of the car says 'Critters of Hollywood!'" this movie, to this day, sometimes makes it difficult to breath.

As odd as this universe is, I find myself lost in it, and that's a good thing. Kevin Smith is probably the weirdest of filmmaker world builders, given that we generally reserve that term for heightened reality type films, or sci fi and fantasy, but that's exactly what Smith does with his brand of crass humor. I love this world and it's so easy for me to get lost in it.

I think the big detraction for the film is that it meanders a lot, and is obviously "studio." But, I don't really care. I enjoyed the meandering quality, and the studio thing seems like people grabbing for something to complain about. The only real validity to the complaint is that one gets used to a certain look to a filmmaker's movies, but honestly, why can't a filmmaker try out different things? Nah, people just like to unfairly hate on Kevin Smith.

Of course, I await the cries of "Fanboy!" as I write these articles. And it's only going to get worse as I'm rounding the corner for the stretch run of them. The love I'm going to show the last four movies will probably sicken the stoutest of Smith-haters, and my proclamation of love for his films will make force them to bend over the nearest toilet and release second breakfast. To that I say-- Good.

As for this film, I love it. I have so many fond memories of seeing this movie with friends, and over time the quality of the movie has held up swimmingly.

4/5 (yeah, I gave it a 4/5)

Brit W.

10. Jersey Girl
9. Cop Out
8. Dogma
7. Zack and Miri Make a Porno
6. Mallrats
5. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
4. ?
3. ?
2. ?
1. ?

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