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The Philodoxer
Thoughts on writing and publishing, and the various sources of entertainment...
A weekly column by Abel G. Peña, best known for his Star Wars work.

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THE PHILODOXER for 08/06/2006
Clerks at the Mooby's!

I saw the original Clerks movie when I was fifteen or sixteen, and like Reservoir Dogs, the movie opened up my imagination to how and what kinds of stories could be told. It also promised me that my twenties would be interesting.

Much like the Star Wars movies Kevin Smith likes to lampoon, the original Clerks set a new standard (or new low) of a kind, specifically how vulgarly intellectual a comedy could be, and the result has been the emergence of strong contenders like There's Something About Mary and Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle. I wasn't the biggest fan of Smith's last movie, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, so I was happy to hear another Clerks movie was getting made.

Clerks II

Clerks II wasn't disappointing, and that in itself is something. Rosario Dawson's spunky performance comes off as natural and complimentary to the cast. Hers may be the biggest name on the card, but thankfully once the camera starts rolling, she isn't the story. Likewise, blunt boys Jay and Bob are back and masterfully relegated to the periphery. Instead best friends Dante and Roland are properly at center stage again, looking disturbingly old as well as pathetic in their Mooby's fast-food uniforms. However, these thirty-somethings have clearly got some fight left in them, and that's precisely the point of the story.

The ending to the movie is both sappy and a copout, but forgivable. Some of Smith's films may lay some claim to literary achievement, but that's really a side effect. Clerks II succeeds in delivering all the entertaining, taboo humor and smatterings of dysfunctional modern drama you've come to expect from the so-called Jersey Chronicles and caps off the series with the right mix of camp and hope.

See ya next week, folks!

- Abel

<< 07/30/2006 | 08/06/2006 | 08/13/2006 >>

Discuss this column with me in World Famous Comics' General Forum and at Pop Culture Bored.
Also, visit my website at www.abelgpena.com.


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