Movie Review: Clerks II (2006)

I was 22 years old when “Clerks” hit the local cineplex. It was watching this movie that created the obnoxious man you see today. A man loosely based on Randal Graves (Jeff Anderson), the quick-witted, foul-mouthed asshole and Jay (Jason Mewes), the dim-witted, stoner. So without question, I had to see whether the characters that made me piss my pants with laughter so many years ago still had it in their return to screen in Clerks II. I was not disappointed.

Randal Graves — still a complete and utter dick. Dante Hicks (Brian O’Halloran) — still the frumpy, dorky dude. Jay — still misunderstood. Silent Bob — still silent (mostly). This time around, we find our fearless friends no longer working at the convenience store but in a step up the corporate ladder, now flipping burgers at Moobys (see “Dogma”). Here the verbal barrages are launched by Randal — just like Hezbolah rockets into Haifa; they’re nonstop and lethal! The introduction of Elias (Trevor Fehrman) as the bible thumping, virgin geek is the perfect addition to the ensemble. Watching Randal interact with this poor fucker is comedy genius.

A very pleasant surprise is the casting of Rosario Dawson as Becky. Nothing helps a movie more than having an extremely hot woman starring in it. You’ll love the dance scene on the rooftop (firm breasts bounce, oh so nicely). The little cameos throughout the movie are also done in a subdued manner. Ben Affleck, Kevin Weisman, Jason Lee and Wanda Sykes pop in and add just a little something extra to make a scene work.

The writing is once again top notch. It literally reminds me of sitting at a bar with a few friends – quick talk, insults and wildly outrageous ramblings (I do this too much). This is what true comedy writing is about. Even more pleasing, was the way Kevin Smith intertwines his movies. There are scatterings of “Dogma,” “Mallrats” and “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back,” that are meant to give a treat to those who follow Smith’s work.

There are several drawbacks, however. Clerks II tries awfully hard to meet the bar of its’ predecessor. It almost tries to be more vulgar and, as an extra treat, more revolting. Clearly not necessary. The other concern, is how long before this franchise loses steam? Smith has been working with these characters for many, many years and there has been a slow, steady decline since. Although this movie has captured most of the original and added a tad of originality, I should hope the characters are laid to rest.

For the utmost enjoyment, I strongly suggest watching the original “Clerks” before viewing this. If that isn’t possible, at least make sure “Clerks” is on the list of movies you’ve got to see prior to your death.

Critical Movie Critic Rating:
4 Star Rating: Good


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The Critical Movie Critics

I'm an old, miserable fart set in his ways. Some of the things that bring a smile to my face are (in no particular order): Teenage back acne, the rain on my face, long walks on the beach and redneck women named Francis. Oh yeah, I like to watch and criticize movies.

'Movie Review: Clerks II (2006)' have 2 comments

  1. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 30, 2006 @ 9:12 am JerseyMike

    I’m not sure I follow or understand your review.

    On one hand you exalt Kevin Smith for his writing abilities,as you state… “once again top notch”… and on the other hand you attack him for trying too hard with vulgarity and being revolting. Which you clearly state wasn’t necessary. Then you question the characters viability and hope the characters are soon laid to rest.

    Yet in your opening paragraph you write this …

    “So without question, I had to see whether the characters that made me piss my pants with laughter so many years ago still had it. I was not dissapointed.”

    (BTW – you spelled disappointed incorrectly, ever hear of a spell checker?)

    Your comments appear to be in contradiction with your overall review.

  2. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 30, 2006 @ 2:58 pm General Disdain

    JerseyMike, I’m not contradicting myself at all. While I certainly enjoyed the movie, I felt the perhaps Kevin Smith tried too hard to top the first movie. The writing was as I expected (quick-witted and honest), yet it seemed that to differentiate from the original, Smith threw in scenes that were clearly over the top, and in my opinion, not true to the series or necessary.
    So even though the movie was entertaining, I fear that continuing down this “slippery slope” will ruin the great characters that I find endearing.
    As for the spell checker, I’ll look into whether there is a plugin available – I wouldn’t want to offend you further with my poor spelling and grammar . . .

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