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- Very Funny
I consider this sequel better than the original. I'm a fan of Smith's movies, for the most part. I laughed throughout most of Clerks II. Jay and Silent Bob have some very funny moments. Rosario is easy on the eyes. ...more info
- Reasonably humorous but a disappointment...
...compared to the first movie...the first one funny and it felt much more spontaneous and improvised...this one is tedious, overacted and overdirected...and what happened to Jason Mewes -- did he just get out of rehab or something?...he looked like death warmed over with a delivery to match...and if someone makes a cameo shouldn't it be something more than wagging their face in front of the camera and walking off?...Affleck shows up and does nothing...can't recommend spending money on this one....more info
- Second In Command
So "Clerks II" isn't an indie film. Who cares? So it's slicker, brassier, brighter, and altogether smugger than its predecessor. Who cares? So it's a bit cruder, raunchier, and evokes a startling brand of sentimentality in the midst of all that vulgarity. I'll say it again: who cares?
Well, okay, fans of the first film will definitely care. And Smith-philes will have some invested in those questions, too. As far as that goes, all that really matters here is forgivability. If you are a purist, this sequel is bound to leave you unsatisfied and grumbling. "Clerks II" abounds with the same rambling, tongue-in-cheek social commentary that made the first film such a success, but this time around the dialogue unspools like it was bought wholesale. Smith's reprisal here thinks it should work simply because it worked once before. Add in a few rib-poking-in-jokes, trot out a couple of guest stars, and slap on a preservative-heavy message about the Meaning of Success, and you've got a film that plays like a tribute to itself. (Again, for old fans, this should be a treat, especially since the movie is packed -- literally overflowing -- with Smith-isms that a casual viewer will likely miss, including the director's obsession with the number 37, a cameo by Smith's own daughter, nods to "Spiderman," hockey, and Smith's childhood home, and a rant against the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy lifted almost directly off of "Evening with Kevin Smith 2.")
There's little need to go over the plot. Dante and Randal are back, but they are no longer employed at Quick Stop. Now they work the day shift at a fast food joint called Mooby's, and although their jobs are different, their attitudes are pretty much the same. Dante is the frustrated straight man, Randal spends most of his time tormenting the up-tight Employee of the Month, Elias (who has one of the best scenes in the film -- listen for the words "pillow pants"), both of them working under the beautiful eyes of Becky (Rosario Dawson). Most of the movie takes place on Dante's last day of employment, as he is getting married and moving to Florida.
That's pretty much it. By itself, the movie is little more than a schmaltzy look at True Love, the conflict between Settling For Okay and Following Your Heart, and the Undying Nature of True Friendship. There are dramatic confrontations, a pointless and self-congratulatory dance scene, long moments of painful self-rumination, and heartfelt confessions (one of them, taking place in a prison, is actually pretty good). This, interspersed with diatribes about beastiality, racism, the handicapped, and -- of course -- why you should never tick off the guy who handles your food.
All in all, while it is entertaining, it's also not that great as far as movies go. The first movie floated along on its own ingenuity, its whip-crack dialogue, its (if you can believe this) brains. Something about "Clerks II" seems half-hearted and watered-down, as if Kevin Smith imagined he'd already done all of the heavy-lifting with the first film. Smith-supporters and "Clerks"-cultists will probably relish this installment and find a safe place for it on their DVD shelves. Anyone else should expect something mildly amusing, but ultimately unintelligent, uninspired, and barely even there. ...more info
- Great return to a topic Kevin knows best: Clerks 2 is awesome.
After being chastized about Jersey Girl and not taking up the mantle of directing The Green Hornet, Kevin Smith comes back at us with another classic tale about Dante and Randal.
This movie, in the innocent raw genre of its previous epic deals with the story of two clerks living their lives after the Quick-Stop, at a Moobys no less!
This time around with a bigger budget and a cast of great new additions, this movie is a classic in the Kevin Smith Catalouge and is a must do DVD if you are a fan. ...more info
- On a par with Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back
This is better than Jersey Girl & Mall Rats
but NOT as good as the OG Clerks or Chasing Amy....more info
I remember when I first heard Kevin Smith was making a "Clerks 2" I doubted he would be able to pull it off. Then I saw the movie poster..."So, it's in color," I thought. Still, it had the same two original actors in it, and I liked those characters, so because I enjoyed the first movie, I wanted to see what Smith had in store for them in second. My expectations grew slightly after I found out Joel Siegel had walked out of the movie. My friend and I wondered, "Did he see the first one."
From what little knowledge I have of the movie industry, it's rare that a sequel is made to a production 10 years after the fact. So, my friend and I (who had went to see the first one together in a dingy $1 theater that stunk and had sticky, soda floors) decided to cough up the dough to see it opening weekend. We do both have full-time jobs now, after all. However, the slacker element remains very much alive in that we went to the matinee. The venue was important. The old $1 theater we had seen the first one at closed about 6 years ago, so we decided to venture to the city where we went to college and see it at a the same theater where we saw The Usual Suspects and Pulp Fiction. But, again as slackers, we were about 5 minutes late and didn't want to miss the beginning. So we checked the newspaper and found a showtime at a newly construction cinemas across town. There was an hour or so to kill, so we swung by the convenience store, grabbed a couple of cans of the black, and downed them in the parking lot of an apartment complex talking about old times. Also smoked a cigar before the movie in celebration, choosing to smoke it before rather than afterward because of our fear we wouldn't be as cheerful when we left. We'd watched the first film the night before to refresh our memory, so Kevin Smith was sure to have a hard time pleasing us we were sure. After all, when the first one was made, Smith hadn't gained his notoriety, at least not nationally. Now, he was at least moderately wealthy if not rich, how could he relate to the slackers of the universe?
As it turned out, we needn't have worried. The movie was just as uncouth, if not more so, than the first. What it did show me is how much Smith has matured ... maybe not so much as a writer, but as a director. For those of you who notice that type of thing, the direction of this film is far, far better than the first. Unexpectedly, it also had a touching moment from Randal toward the end that I think is the film's best moment. Smith handled the black-and-white/color dilemma masterfully, but I'm not going to reveal how in case you haven't seen it yet.
In short, if you like Smith's stuff, check this out. If you don't, don't....more info
- Doesn't hold up to the original 'Clerks'
Dante arrives to work at the Quick Stop to find it burning. After 10 years in a dead-end job, Dante and Randal are forced to find new employment. Clerks II is about their new jobs at Mooby's, a fast food restaurant. Jay and Silent Bob follow them, and are now hanging out at Mooby's too.
Dante is getting ready to leave for Florida with his new fianc¨¦, a shallow girl with a personal problem Randal is quick to point out. Her father is going to pay for their new house and give Dante a carwash to run, so things are looking pretty cozy for Dante. Randal decides to celebrate Dante's departure with a "cross-species erotica show".
Will Dante actually leave New Jersey for Florida? Will he leave best friend Randal behind? Or is there actually something left in New Jersey to hold him there?
The charm in this movie is in the dialogue alone, plus the fact that they managed to get hottie Rosario Dawson to play Becky, Mooby's manager and Dante's good friend. The first 'Clerks' had the charm of black-and-white photography, and although made on a lower budget managed to keep a tighter rein on the storyline while appearing as if the entire movie was shot through a surveillance camera. 'Clerks II' is filmed in color, and lacks the charm of the first movie.
Interesting notes of the movie is the dialogue during the argument over Lord Of The Rings vs. Star Wars, plus the crazy scene with Randal's "going away gift". There are foul words and $exual references and a lot of cynical pottie mouths, but that's what 'Clerks' is all about. Unfortunately, other than Jay and Silent Bob, the cast didn't hold up well to the passing of time and lost a great deal of their charm. However, this movie is still funny, earning three and a half stars, but can't hold a candle to the first 'Clerks'. Enjoy!
- The Clerks are back!!
I greatly enjoyed the first Clerks, so when I found out Kevin Smith was making a sequal I was exstatic!! Clerks II has all the vulgarity and comedy as the first. This movie is a great buy for all who want a good laugh!...more info
- Clerks 2 is a study in unnecessary sequels
The film opens with Dante and Randall pulling up to the Quick Stop and finding it burning down because Randall left the coffee pot on. Their lives as they know them are over... or are they? A year later they are now working at Mooby's a fast food chain, with their boss, the incredibly out-of-place Rosario Dawson. Dawson does her best to pull it off, but she's just too beautiful to belong in this movie, especially as a love interest for Dante Hicks. Fanboys and Mooby's employees can dream, but it's just too much of a stretch.
What's interesting is that it seems like the $5 million budget for Clerks 2 vs. the $28,000 budget for the original actually ends up negatively affecting the film. With more set pieces and more action, Smith doesn't seem to know what to do with his set. And bringing back Dante and Randall (Brian O'Halloran and Jeff Anderson) for another feature is just too much. He's already squeezed these characters dry of most interesting conversation after the first film, and their deadpan lack of delivery might have worked in a low budget black and white film, but here it's almost painful to listen to. There are still a few funny monologues and moments, but for the most part, Dante and Randall's complaining and bickering just comes off a bit screeching, especially considering that they're now in their thirties.
It seems like Kevin Smith hit a wall with Dogma. After a string of successful, low budget films, maybe Smith ran out of solid ideas, or maybe he just needs to refuel his creative juices. Going back to the well with his original characters the first time for Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back didn't prove very fruitful, so he set out to make some kind of romantic comedy-ish film with Jersey Girl, which flopped terribly, and now we're digging deeper into the well with Clerks 2, Smith's first sequel.
There are two discs, which makes for too much viewing really. There's a documentary about the making of Clerks 2 that's just as long as the movie itself, as well as a thirty minute blooper reel, with a few minutes of Jason Lee flubbing his lines, and showing that he just showed up to film for a few hours as a favor and is ready to get out of there.
Overall, Clerks 2 is an unneeded addition to the View Askew world and the rest of us could have done without it too. It needlessly adds to a story that concluded, and in fact detracts from the original. if you haven't already seen it, I'd recommend staying away, or asking someone that's seen it to tell you which few scenes are watchable and check those out. ...more info
- A good sequel to one of my favorite films
Sometimes its difficult to judge a sequel without directly comparing it to its predecessor. Most film makers take this into account, and strive to either make a better film or at least one comparable to the original. Sometimes they succeed and sometimes the results are mixed. With that said, I think "ClerksII" is a very good movie, and a decent sequel.
Kevin Smith is always a capable director. His greatest skills are working with his actors and getting comic timing to work in the best way. His visual style is solid and not very flashy. He always includes some great visual gags, hilarious dialogue and lots of humor going on in the background of shots. This movie provides all those. The sets at Mooby's fast food joint are perfect. I also enjoyed Dante's farewell party, and his dancing lesson with Becky. Also worth noting is the soundtrack that grabs some great music and places it precisely where it's needed. Its interesting to note that most of the music has a very 90's feel to it.
The acting is also pretty solid across the board. The main cast is all comfortable in their roles, with O'Halloran and Anderson being the main focus of the film. However the inclusion of Rosario Dawson and Trevor Fehrman (as Elias) are welcome and add a great deal to the film. Fehrman in particular captures the painfully nerdy character that you feel bad for and want to slap all at the same time.
The script is typical Kevin Smith antics. That means some people are going to love it and others are going to hate it. Since the original "Clerks" was one of my favorite movies, I knew what to expect and wasn't disappointed. If I have one complaint its just that the tone of this movie felt a little less irreverent to the original. I know this was intentional, but at the same time, it felt like it was very hard to take these characters seriously. I really enjoyed the film, but when compared to the original, it just wasn't as funny or fresh. Fans of Kevin Smith's previous films should be entertained by the film. If you disliked Kevin's other movies, or were expecting something more like "Chasing Amy", well this isn't going to float your boat....more info
- 3 stars out of 4
The Bottom Line:
Clerks II is a movie that is exactly what it sets out to be: a ribald, hilarious comedy that doesn't really attempt to be any more and should be praised for delivering solid comedy without any "message" or pretentiousness. ...more info
- Clerks II-Electric Boogaloo
Clerks was an indie hit, but as time went on Kevin Smith got less indie, but was still the same guy, doing the same movies, with a larger budget. This movie really sits right where Smith, and the fans of the first movie are now; mid to late 30s, with their lives in front and behind them. The funny things from the past are still funny, but only in a nostalgic way.. somehow everything's shifted, and you need to change who you are. I related so well to this movie, the realization that we aren't who we once were, that the future is ours to make crappy or great, that we should follow who we are. I think he made his point about this better in this movie than in Clerks. Better written, better point, much stronger movie....more info
Hillarious. If you've enjoyed all the other movies, you'll love this one. I laughed out loud through the whole flick. Epic!...more info
- Kevin Smith Strikes again
Clerks II rocked!! Plenty of KS jokes to quote later on. The characters ae awesome and he does a great job allowing Dante and Randall grow up a little. A no brainer for any who love Kevins movies....more info
- A huge improvement over the first film
Clerks has always been my lest favorite Kevin Smith film, but it's sequel is a vast improvement over the first. Clerks II still has the sharp wit from all of Smith's previous films and the casting addition of Roasrio Dawson is a plus. The cameos by Jason Lee, comedians Earthquake & Wanda Sykes provide belly laughs aplenty. If you get a chance check this one out....more info
- Great movie & Great Bonus Features = 5 Star Review!
Clerks II is a great movie. Its the rare sequel that just may be better then the original. The DVD delivers just what you expect from a Kevin Smith flick. It has the movie itself and over 6 hours of bonus material. Thats right folks, 6 HOURS! The bonus features include bloopers, behind the scenes, making of, and so much more. If you already saw this movie, its worth checking out the DVD for all of these great goodies. Great movie & Great Bonus Features = 5 Star Review!...more info
- doesn't compare to the original
had some funny parts, but the movie was kinda stupid and gimmicky. it's kinda like a Harold & Kumar type movie, it's decently funny, somewhat entertaining, but lacks substance. they should have quit after the original Clerks. that was a great movie. and if you've seen the original directors cut of the first one, you'd know that they couldn't have possibly made this sequel...more info
- I'm disgusted and repulsed and... and I can't look away
Clerks II finds Dante and Randal still working at Quick Stop, lo these many years later--until Randal burns it down by forgetting to turn off the coffee pot. Kevin Smith is a more polished film maker now, but of course it lacks the raw energy of his earlier stuff. Like the original Clerks. It seems like he peaked about 5 years earlier, with 2001's Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. This film tries to come to terms with more adult themes, growing up, getting married settling down. But ultimately, it rejects that premise and fosters the view that adolescence can be maintained permanently, and that is all I can say without totally giving away the ending.
Brian O'Halloran as Dante Hicks is a slightly better actor years later, but it is harder to care about his character. It is no longer cute for him to be a slacker, and if he is going to just give up, get married, and settle into a boring life, as he no doubt should, well, who cares?
Jeff Anderson returns as Randal Graves, as annoying as ever, but that was his peculiar charm. It was rumored that there was a falling out between him and autuer Kevin Smith, and in the "thanks you's" and aknowledgements, that seemed confirmed. He was back, and he "hit it out of the park" but again, who cares? He couldn't save this movie.
Nor could Jay, or Silent Bob, who for once, was literally speechless. There was a new character, a repressed nerd from a strict religious family, Elias, but though he offered a good characterization, his character was poorly written, and I didn't buy it. Pillow pants?
Randal Graves: You can't get a chick, ya mook. You're too weird and sad.
Elias: [gets angry] I turn down chicks left and right.
Randal Graves: Your chicks *are* your left and right.
The best acting of all, though once again, I didn't buy it, was Rosario Dawson acting like she was in love with Hicks. I really enjoyed her performance, but still could not suspend my disbelief. Why did Hicks, a clerk in a Quick Stop for 10 years, and then a fast food employee, attract a beautiful woman like Dawson? And, he had Jennifer Schwalbach Smith, not too shabby herself, wanting to marry him. She is Kevin Smith's wife in real life, so it would be within the realm of possibillity that she could love Dante. A step up, even. But Rosario Dawson? Why did she even agree to do this movie? Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Kevin Smith) seem like they are alter egos for Dante and Randal, don't you think? Duh.
Anyway, though I have trashed Clerks II, I enjoyed watching it, especially the scenes with Rosario Dawson, but mildly entertaining though it was, I still have to say that it wasn't a very good movie. It was a good effort. It gives closure to the View Askew story arc.
Jay: Nong, nong, ning-a ning-a nong nong!
Directed by Kevin Smith
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001)
Chasing Amy - Criterion Collection (1997)
Mallrats (Collector's Edition) (1995)
Clerks (Collector's Series) (1994)
Selected Roles of Rosario Dawson
Rent (Fullscreen) (2005) .... Mimi Marquez
Sin City (2005) .... Gail
Alexander - Director's Cut (Full Screen Edition) (2004) .... Roxane
Josie and The Pussycats (2001) .... Valerie Brown
Kids (1995) .... Ruby
Becky: I'm disgusted and repulsed and... and I can't look away. ...more info
- I can't believe I actually found this funny.
There was a point in time when it looked as though Kevin Smith had finally decided to grow up. After making "Clerks" and "Mallrats", Smith then went on to make the arguably more sophistocated but still funny "Chasing Amy" and "Dogma". He even made a film without regulars, Jay and Silent Bob. Unfortunately, the commercial and critical failure of "Jersey Girl" must have scared Smith because with "Clerks 2", Smith returns to his sophomoric roots.
"Clerks 2" is another day in the lives of shop clerks, Dante and Randall. They're now 10 years older and working at Mooby's (Smith's equivalent to McDonald's), instead of the Quickstop, but other than that, nothing much has changed, and the jokes are still as crude as ever.
In the time since I saw my first Kevin Smith film, I thought I had grown out of this sort of humour, and yet, as the film progressed, I did find myself laughing, in spite of myself. Some of the jokes are very funny and it was nice to pay another visit to some "old friends" (as an aside, this film also features cameos by Smith regulars Ben Afleck, Jason Lee and Ethan Suplee). It's not as good as Smith's earlier films and I probably won't watch it again for a long time, but it's better than "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back" and I'm not intending on selling my copy either.
Overall, if you are new to Kevin Smith films, start with something else (I'd recommend Mallrats (Collector's Edition)), but if you're a long time Smith fan, like myself, you won't be wasting your time by watching this....more info
- Sixth Episode from the View Askew Universe. Buy It.
Watching `Clerks II', written and directed by Kevin Smith and (with apologies to `Mad' Magazine) `the usual gang of idiots' is like visiting an old friend after a three year separation (roughly the time since the release of 'Jersey Girl'). `Clerks II' is Kevin Smith's seventh movie and the sixth to take place in the `View Askew' universe, in spite of the veiled threat to leave this venue at the end of `Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back'. And, obviously, it is a sequel to his first movie, `Clerks', released 12 years ago, putting Smith on the map as a talented independent filmmaker, validated by being distributed by Bob and Harvey Weinsteins company, Mirimax. Smith and the Weinsteins have been collaborators ever since.
Like `Dogma', the movie with which I first became familiar with Smith's work, `Clerks II' is a tangle of contradictions, as you may expect from devout Catholic Smith who happens to make `potty mouth' movies. It has some of the raunchiest language and suggestions of perverse sexuality; however, these almost always remain at the `suggestion' stage, the subject of teenager wet dreams. Except, the principal characters here, Dante and Randal, played by Brian O'Halloran and Jeff Anderson (I suspect Anderson gets top billing to help convince him to reprise his role. More on this later) are in their mid-thirties. In `movie time', they've been clerks at the Quick Stop for the last 10 years and have moved their act to clerking at a local New Jersey (filmed in LA, of course) Mooby's (a fast food chain invented in `Dogma'). The 35-year-old `teenager' lifestyle is the fuel for most of the movie plot and humor.
The cast and crew make the production seem like the job of creating a fraternity float in `Animal House'. Even famous Smith friends Ben Affleck and Jason Lee show up in cameos (with Lee being on screen long enough to almost qualify as a minor character). I kept waiting for Matt Damon to show up, but he never made it. He must be off doing another A-List thriller. The most widely anticipated appearance is Jason Mewes and Smith as Jay and Silent Bob, in the first movie where, according to his own confession, Mewes is not high on something. I don't know if it's my imagination, but it almost seems that Mewes' performance has just a tad less energy than in his appearances in `Dogma' and `Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back'. I do know that silent Bob's routine is getting just a bit old. They do, however, add their spice to the dish and would have been missed if they were not there.
The one A-list star in the cast is Rosario Dawson, taking over the Liv Tyler part (in Jersey Girl) in our merry band. There is evidence that her appearance was part of the conditions under which Harvey Weinstein agreed to fund the production. I'm not familiar with her other roles. She appeared in `Alexander' and some other major flicks. I suspect `Clerks II' will actually look better on her resume than that ancient Greek bomb.
The last two major characters are played by Trevor Fehrman who earlier collaborated as an actor in a Jeff Anderson movie and Jennifer Schwalbach, who in `real life' is Mrs. Kevin Smith. Of the two, Fehrman gives the stronger performance as the true teenager on the Mooby crew. Schwalbach does a good performance, but shouldn't loose her day job.
It's been quite some time since I saw the original `Clerks', but I do see some obvious parallels in the plots of the two movies, which are much more cleverly done than resorting to flashbacks. There is a scene on the roof of Moobys, similar to the hockey game in the original, and the road trip, similar to the visit to the funeral parlor in `Clerks'. We even see Smith's mom playing the compulsive searcher for the freshest bottle of milk.
While I find Smith's movies entertaining (except for his second, `Mallrats') and immensely funny, he and his team really come into their own when they put out their DVDs. His cover blurb `Loaded with over 6 Hours of Bonus Features' is even conservative, as I suspect you will find enough material for at least four or five weeknight viewings (in addition to that great Friday night date on the living room couch, where you don't get past the third reel before being distracted). There are the usual two voice-over commentaries, blooper reel, and outtakes. But, the best addition is the feature length `Making of Clerks II' documentary which tells the story of the movie from conception to release at both Cannes and Hollywood.
Smith's movies are not for everyone. But, if I hold them up to my gold standard for comedies, the better films of Woody Allen, they really come off quite well, at the very least in the laughs per minute measure. Smith even manages to fit in a few Allenesque psychological insights and pathos here and there. While this movie doesn't have the durability of `Annie Hall' or `Hannah and Her Sisters', it has more substance to it than the average Will Ferrell (not counting `Stranger than Fiction') or Ben Stiller opus. One can gain considerable hope for a robust Christianity when we see it coexist with scatology used just for the fun of it.
To recap, this is certainly not for everyone, but for those who share Smith's sense of humor, this is a long drink of cool water (taken from bottled water, to be sure).
Clerks was made great with a small budget. This is a follow-up with a better budget because of commedic genious....more info
- Bit of a let down
The first Clerks movie was an indie classic. In the second one they basically butchered the characters and plot lines. There are a few good laughs and is pretty entertaning, but in comparison to the first movie, this one is not a good....more info
- Finding your destiny at Mooby's
I became a fan of the original "Clerks" back in the 90s. After watching a "Clerks" and "Mallrats" double feature on satellite TV last month, I decided I needed to catch up with the characters. So I bought this DVD, checked out the movie, and went through most of the extras. If you liked the first flick, then you need to add this one to your collection.
"Clerks II" picks up a decade or so after "Clerks." After accidentally torching the Quick Stop and RST Video building, Dante (Brian O"Halloran) and Randal (Jeff Anderson) wind up with jobs at Mooby's, a typical fast-food joint. A year later, Dante is engaged to an attractive but controlling blond and prepping for a move to Florida. To "celebrate" Dante's impending departure, Randal decides to throw a raucous surprise going-away party. The rest of the movie plays out over the course of Dante's last day, as buried passions rise to the surface and all sorts of crazy stuff happens.
The "Clerks" characters are easy to identify with. In the first movie, Dante and Randal struggled with young adulthood and finding purpose in life. Here, their rage against the machine continues with the thirtysomething angst of "growing up" and leaving youth behind for stability and responsibility - in other words abandoning options in order to take a certain path (see the movie "High Fidelity" for another great example of that theme). They're also poster boys for what happens to close male friendships when a woman enters the picture (especially when she doesn't like the other guy). Finally, the geek in me loves it when they rant about pop culture, like arguments with customers over which movie trilogy is best: "Star Wars," or "Lord of the Rings." As a Christian, sometimes I struggle with Kevin Smith's raunchiness (the donkey stuff was a bit much, to say the least - you have been warned), especially when I'm laughing at it. But the man professes a relationship with God, and he touches on some deep stuff with a sense of humor, so I have to give him props for that.
Despite the considerable gap between the two movies and some additional paunch, the actors nail their characters (doing the "Clerks" animated show must've helped). The two leads have a natural chemistry, so I easily bought them as lifelong friends. The female leads from the first movie don't return, but the women in our heroes' lives this time around are good to go, especially Rosario Dawson as Dante's manager and confidant. She conveys just the right mix of ebullience, seriousness, and vulnerability with her character. And it's always fun to see Jay and Silent Bob in action, both in and out of jail.
The DVD extras are cool - Kevin Smith certainly uses the format to its fullest potential. I was amazed by the amount of planning and detail involved in the filmmaking process. Even a small budget film like this one entails a ton of planning, development, and logistics. Aspects of the creative process, like a critique of the rough cut by directors Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez, were fascinating. And after all that blood, sweat, and tears, how will the public receive one's pride and joy? Mr. Smith was somewhat cynical about how "Clerks II" would be received at Cannes, but the 8-minute standing ovation at the movie's end was a solid affirmation. Particularly touching was Jason Mewes' struggle for sobriety (apparently this is the first time he's played Jay w/out chemical assistance). It was a nice touch to see the cast and crew rally around him and encourage his recovery. Of course, the deleted scenes and bloopers are fun as well.
A special nod should go to the two main commentary tracks. The cast commentary focuses more on the actors and their perspectives. As with "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" commentary, I was disappointed by the absence of the female lead (Rosario Dawson) - her insights were missed. However, the rest of the cast made it fun, especially with Mr. Smith holding the reins and keeping things on track. It's obvious that they got along well during the shoot. The technical commentary with director Kevin Smith, producer Scott Mosier, and director of photography David Klein is a bit drier because it's, well, technical. It centers on the filmmaking process (film stock, lighting, set design, special effects, etc.). Although I found the tech stuff less captivating at times, it was interesting to get the scoop on how they used color and film type to help tell the story. Overall, it's amazing to see how the film came together, and how far they've advanced as filmmakers since the first movie.
If you're a Kevin Smith fan, then I'm sure you've already seen "Clerks II" (if not, then what are you waiting for?). However, if you're new to the View Askewniverse, then check out the original before watching this one. That way you'll get the full meal deal, and hopefully come to enjoy these characters and their struggles as much as I have....more info
- Not Impressed
I discovered the original Clerks pretty recently, and found myself utterly impressed. Kevin Smith's knack for dialogue, the way the actors rapport made it seem like they were really friends, the way the plot moved subtly, and the attention to detail in the little indie film made me excited to check out Smith's more recent endeavors. So, naturally, I thought CLERKS II would be my best shot, judging by how good the first one was.
Well, the movie is definitely more mainstream, abandoning the black and white film for vibrant colors and leaving behind the Quick Stop for Mooby's (a fast food joint). The color definitely works, given the new atmosphere, and Kevin Smith at least made an effort to keep the mood of the first one. A lot of the film is pretty much just dudes talking... though Smith doesn't handle "dudes talking" nearly as good as he did in the first one. The dialogue is so stylized, making the acting seem stilted when it's really not, because it seems like Smith tried to hard to capture the witty banter that he wrote lines that no one would ever actually say. So all of it seems very overly scripted, as if every line is a reminder that this is a movie, forcing the audience to not feel connected with the story. Smith does, however, handle emotion better than he did in the first. There is a scene between Dante and Randal that really could stand on its own, and if it wasn't attached to this mostly bogus flick, it would have been a 10/10 classic short. It's a scene where Randal and Dante are in jail, and Randal confesses both his fears and pride in the slacker lifestyle he leads, which leads both of the friends to make a huge decision. I loved that scene, and it was both hilarious and moving... it's a shame the whole film lacked that excellence.
What the rest of the film consists of is disappointingly easy comedy. It's as if Kevin Smith knew he had messed the dialogue up and had to compensate with the most ridiculous things, like your stereotypical sheltered Jesus kid who is really a sex freak, an extremely long scene where someone gives it to a donkey in the middle of Mooby's, and also--wait for it--a full, Broadway style dance scene. Random dancers dancing in the parking lot. I have no idea what in the world Kevin Smith was thinking, but everything before the jail scene (excluding a debate about The Lord of the Rings, which really captured the tone of the first one) was an exercise in ensuring that the audience would have absolutely no connection to the story or the characters. The heart and brain was taken out of the movie, and replaced with pure silliness. I know that some View Askew fans really liked Clerks II, and I'm so happy for those that were able to connect to the film in the same way that they connect to Clerks. But, unfortunately, I could only find a few good tidbits about the movie, which is pretty sad considering how fantastic the first one is.
- Long and talky, but with some hilarious moments
I liked II better than the original. Definitely worth seeing. Very talkative at times and the humor is hit and miss. Enough funny moments to make it worth watching, and it features a rather nice, heartwarming ending.
The HD DVD looks terrific, and the 2 disc set (!) features terrific extras....more info
- even better than the original
this is, in my opinion, the funniest kevin smith movie yet, a must have for fans of his movies...more info
- As good if not better than the original
If you're a Kevin Smith / Jay and Silent Bob fan, this is a must for your collection. Humor in the movie is non stop. The quality of the audio and video is excellent....more info
- Spooky Walked Out On Me & Left Me With This...
I went to see this and my friend of seven years walked out on me. He said was the worst movie and I have to agree because my buddy left me with Kevin Smith's sour shallow sequel. This the worst movie I have seen since the last movie Kevin Smith put out. ...more info
- Great Great Great movie
They should all be stars. I want to see them all in more movies . KS picks these wonderful people. Start casting these actors!!!...more info
Best part of this movie was hearing Soul Asylum at the end and the movie being over....more info