Montreal Film Journal

THE DIRECTORS SERIES (8)


THE FILMS OF KEVIN SMITH

1994
Clerks 62
[ The acting and production values are dirt-poor, but right out of the gate Kevin Smith showed a distinctive ear for dialogue, be it hilarious dick and fart jokes or true insights into relationships, pop culture and life as a convenience or video store clerk, jobs I'm both very familiar with. "This job would be great if it wasn't for the fucking customers." ]

1995
Mallrats 54
[ Kevin Smith does ‘80s-style youth comedy in his more or less justifiably maligned second film. Jeremy London is one of the most unappealing "actors" to ever step in front of a camera and the movie often veers too far into stupid slapstick, but "Mallrats" deserves to be cherished nonetheless if only for introducing the world to the wise-ass godliness of then-pro skateboarder Jason Lee. ]

1997
Chasing Amy 87
[ review ]

1999
Dogma 88
[ review ]

2001
Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back 81
[ review ]

2002
An evening with Kevin Smith 80
[ What's Kevin Smith's biggest talent? His writing, right? I mean, dude couldn't direct traffic in Leonardo, New Jersey, but he's able to write movies both heartfelt and hilarious, smart and juvenile. But even his writing can get messy and compromised at times, and who knows what actors can do to ruin good material (that means you, Jeremy London). So what better way to get the full Smith experience than to spend 4 hours listening to the man himself? This DVD was shot during a series of Q&A sessions in colleges across America in which Smith talks in depth – and vulgarity – about his movies, of course, but also tells great anecdotes about watching a Jason Mewes sex tape, protesting his own "Dogma", his infamously rejected "Superman Reborn" screenplay and subsequent feud with Tim Burton, the first time he scored with his wife, his failed documentary project with Prince... Smith is truly a gifted storyteller, and this a real treat. ]

2004
Jersey Girl 55
[ review ]

2006
Clerks II 91
[ review ] [ my interview with Kevin Smith ]

2008
Zack and Miri Make a Porno 65
[ review ]

2010
Cop Out 67
[ review ]

NEXT: RED STATE (2011)