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Clerks II - Review

Jay and Silent Bob in Clerks II

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

DVD SPECIAL FEATURES: Feature Commentary with Director Kevin Smith, Producer Scott Mosier and Director of Photography Dave Klein; Feature Commentary with Director Kevin Smith, Producer Scott Mosier and Actors Jeff Anderson, Trevor Fehrman, Jason Mewes, Brian O’Halloran and Jennifer Schwalbach; Podcast Commentary with Director Kevin Smith, Producer Scott Mosier and Actor Jeff Anderson; Intro to Clerks II; Intro to Deleted Scenes; Deleted Scenes; A Closer Look at Interspecies; Erotica; Easter Egg; Intro to Back to the Well/Clerks II; Back to the Well/Clerks II; Intro to Blooper Reel; Blooper Reel (Outtakes); Intro to Train Wrecks- Train Wrecks: Video Production Diaries; Easter Egg; Hooray for Hollywood; Easter Egg – Clerkin’ Off.

IT’S safe to say that fans of Kevin Smith’s original Clerks will be tingling with excitement at the prospect of revisiting a number of their favourite characters. But while certainly enjoyable in places, this belated sequel doesn’t always run smoothly.

Picking up 10 years after audiences were first introduced to Dante Hicks (Brian O’Halloran) and Randal Graves (Jeff Anderson), the mini-mall clerks who spent their days slacking off and talking about movies, the film now finds them working in the fast-food industry. But while the location has changed, their antics have not and they’re as confrontational as ever.

Looming over both, however, is the prospect of Dante’s marriage and his imminent New Jersey departure – a situation compounded by the fact that he’s not entirely sure about the girl he loves.

Hence, as a new life and an inevitable maturity rears its ugly head, Dante must choose between his rich fiance Emma Bunting (Jennifer Schwalbach) and his sexy manager (Rosario Dawson).

Randal, meanwhile, is determined to give his best buddy the biggest send-off possible and is planning something completely outrageous in between poking fun at the diner’s dim-witted uber-nerd (Trevor Fehrman).

And Jay and Silent Bob are up to their usual antics outside, occasionally flitting in and out of the action to offer an opinion or a wisecrack.

Kevin Smith’s film is undoubtedly good fun to be around and boasts at least two exceptional moments – but it comes up short when compared to the director’s best work. Indeed, it seems to be suffering from the same confusion as its characters regarding whether to play it mature or totally juvenile.

Given that it’s also dialogue heavy, not every one of the conversations flows as smoothly as it should, although it does help to make the film feel far more authentic.

That said, fans of Dante and Randal will enjoy checking back in with them and there are plenty of moments to take-away and savour. These include a riotous debate over the merits of George Lucas’ Star Wars trilogy over Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings and a really nice rooftop dance sequence set to the soundtrack of Michael Jackson’s ABC (your feet will be tapping in tandem with everyone on-screen).

There are also some nice cameos from the likes of Smith regulars Ben Affleck, Jason Lee and Ethan Suplee, while Jay and Silent Bob share some cool moments.

The overblown finale is truly outrageous and equally capable of offending as it is making you roll around the aisles.

Viewers are therefore advised to sit back and go with the fun as Clerks II offers an amusing night out whether you know the characters or not.

Read our interview with Rosario Dawson

Rating: 15
Running time: 98mins