Sunday, September 24, 2006

CLERKS II - Interspecies Erotica

This review is brought to you by guest reviewer, Nik, who can normally be found here:

Nikolai 3:16 - For I so loved Clerks that I spent my only begotten Saturday evening watching the sequel, that whosoever readeth this blog shall not waste their money but save 2 hours of their life.

Actually, that's slightly unfair, but let's start with the downside, and there's a big downside:

It's no wonder that most of the cast from the original Clerks never got a job in acting again, until this sequel. Clerks II is poorly acted - so poorly that, even in the few places where the script isn't sweaty monkeyballs, it actually makes you want to look away. But don't worry too much about that, because the number of times that the script and dialogue struggle to lift themselves out of the mire sufficiently for the audience to notice the terrible acting are strictly and skillfully minimised by the author.

The "plot", so called, that writer/director Kevin Smith tried to inject into Clerks II in between the comic sequences was so laughably awful, so patronisingly predictable, and so execrably executed that it literally made even the most hardcore Clerks fans amongst us squirm in their seats. Indeed, the "plot" actually seemed to spoil and dull, at least in part, the comic sequences that proceeded it - since rather than making us love the main protagonists more and empathise with their plight - it managed to stir antipathy and distaste at their actions. To make it worse, the film was nothing to look at - the production values were zero - the camera was skewed and occasionally out of focus - this was an amateurish job. Some might say that this was in honour of the original Clerks - but it wore thin.

But having savaged almost everything important about Clerks II, I must admit, there is a plus side. For Clerks fans at least, this was a funny film. Bina007 and I were laughing hard most of the way through - although it should be noted that Professor007, who had never seen or heard of Clerks before, was far less impressed with the comedy. Sure, there were sequences and jokes that simply didn't work (e.g. "One ring to rule them all") - and some that weren't capitalised on at all that could have been explosive (e.g. "pussy trolls") but the sheer number of gags - the weight of comedy - managed to see this film through until the end.

As well as that, the homo-erotic tension between our two heros Dante and Randall was much more pronounced than in the first film - and though I'm sure Professor007 was cringing in his seat - Bina and I thought it was rather cute. They actually made a nice couple, and it would have been sweet to see them kissing at the end, although of course, for the sake of a 15-rating I'm sure, that didn't happen. But happily, the 15-rating didn't stop them from putting beastiality, breasts, ass-to-mouth, drugs and liberal sprinklings of vaginal humour in there. Which is what I paid my 20 bucks to see.

But readers, as much as I loved Clerks - Dante, Randall, Jay and Silent Bob - I can't in all good conscience recommend this film to any but those who saw and loved the first film. It's not that there are that many in-jokes in the sequel - it's just that you already have to know and love the characters, their situation, their idiosyncracies, to really appreciate this movie. Clerks II simply doesn't contain any characterisation, or scene setting, or decent plot - so someone coming to this film fresh, as Professor007 did, will be totally unable to properly appreciate it.

So if like Bina and I you loved Clerks, go and see Clerks II, it'll pass the time and give you some hearty and hard fought laughs. Otherwise, save your money for the destined to be epic "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan". Personally I can't wait!

CLERKS II is already on release in the US, Australia, Israel, Spain, the UK and Iceland. It opens in Portugal, Russia and Italy later this month and in the Netherlands in October. It opens in Hungary in November and Belgium and France in January 2007


  1. For all its ham-fisted sentimentality and false notes I waver more on the side of recommending that condemning this picture. I laughed like a hyena whenever I wasn't sighing in pain and digust. It is a rather bi-polar Alpha Gamma sort of a film.

  2. Surely it can't be any worse than Chasing Amy! Right!?

  3. I *LOVE* Chasing Amy. *LOVE* it. It has its flaws but where else do you see a serious conversation about how men and women can feel sexually insecure with each other?

  4. Chasing Amy is a heavy handed, pretentious pile of steaming dung. The only good thing about it is Jason Lee but even he can't stop me from hating such an awful film. I guess Joey Lauren Adams' hotness helps a bit too but I could just watch another of her films instead. I have to say Kevin Smith's films are over-rated.