Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Movie Review Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back

I have the sense of humor of a third grader.  I find a good dick joke hilarious, and fart jokes ain't half bad either. As such I tend to like a lot of movies a lot of other people write off.  One of these days I'm going to write a Joe Dirté review.

But for now I'm going to go with Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.

Before I get into the movie some background. Let's talk about Kevin Smith.

Who is Silent Bob?
So in the early 90's a new vanguard of indie directors took to the scene. What made these directors so unique was that they were able to make relatively successful movies at incredibly low costs. Much lower than conventional wisdom at the time said you could.

Remember these were the days before broadband. Even if you managed to finance and produce a movie independently you would still need to get it picked up by a distributor to be seen. You couldn't just post it YouTube.

The golden triumvirate of these guys were Quentin Tarantino with Reservoir Dogs

Robert Rodriguez with El Mariachi.

And Kevin Smith with Clerks

Clerks is the movie that put Smith on the map, not counting the soundtrack and marketing he produced the film for about 25 grand. Nearly unheard of. I like Clerks but I tend to cut it a lot of slack because of its low budget.

Anyway like anybody would Smith wrote himself as the protagonist but later decided he didn't want to memorize all of that dialogue. So he cast himself as a new character who didn't have to say anything. Silent Bob. Bob along with his "heterosexual lifemate" Jay have been in most of Smith's early films.

I love Kevin Smith movies but even I'll admit he's not as diverse as his contemporaries, usually doing his best work when writing down to earth slackers, or beings who have the snark of down to earth slackers.

As such Smith decided to eventually give the two perennial slackers their own movie, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.

Continuity Cavalcade
Apart from the toilet humor the movie also banks on the continuity of the view askew universe. Up until this movie most of Smith's movies were similar in tone. Okay think about it like this. Let's go to Dogma, Smith's forth movie or rather a conversation held in Dogma about John Hughes.

A lot of fans hold that most of John Hughs' movies, Bueller's Day Off, Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, St. Elmo's Fire,  and Weird Science take place in the same universe due to their similar tone and themes. Well same thing with Smith movies, Jay and Silent Bob being the node that holds them all together.

As such the movie is abound with references to his other movies often providing a where are they now for his other characters.

The movie is designed for for people who are intimately familiar with the Smith oeuvre.

The Forth Wall
Something weird about both Jay and Silent Bob is that they are both somewhat caricatures of the personalities their actors had when Clerks was being written. Keep in mind that was like 20 years ago or 10 years from when this movie was made.  neither Jason Mewes nor Kevin Smith are exactly like that now but Jay is Jay. And the plot of the movie plays with that.

The main plot is that a comic book mentioned in one of Smith's previous movies which features caricatured versions of the pair has gotten picked up for a movie and Jay and Silent Bob are concerned about their portrayal.

The conceit also acts as a nice way for the movie to make fun of itself, as well as the fans and actors.

This  movie is littered with actors. Jamie Kennedy, John Stewart, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Mark Hamill, Will Ferrell, Chris Rock, Jason Lee, Diedrich Bader, Shannon Doherty, Jason Biggs and even the late great George Carlin. Sure most of these are cameos but it's clear most of these actors were having fun.

Visual Comedy
I always believed that Kevin Smith was great at visual comedy.

And here is no different.

But a lot of the humor are inside jokes.

This movie has always been one of my guilty pleasures.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Facebook Comments

Note: These Comments are from all across this blog.