He may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but my next entrant in my Top 5: Director Series had quite the effect on my formative cinematic years. It’s Kevin Smith.
Honourable Mention: Red State.
Smith takes on the religious right in this flick from 2011. An obvious pop at the demented Westboro Baptist Church, Red State gives religious fundamentalism the horror treatment with reasonable results. Still kinda wished he’d kept his alternate ending though.
Smiths sophomore effort is a pretty hit & miss affair for me if I’m going to be totally honest. I liked it a lot more when I was college age than what I do now. It is what it is, an indie director being given a buttload of cash and free reign. Might not be to all tastes but has to be admired for it chutzpah.
4: Clerks 2.
The most unlikely of sequels arrived in 2006 and was actually pretty damn good. Returning to the characters of Dante & Randell was an inspired move on Smiths part as they were so loved. It’s smutty, immature and very funny. Love it.
Smith Vs Catholicism. Dogma understandably got him into a bit of hot water. The Buddy Christ, The Golgothan S**t Demon, God is actually Alanis Morrisette. It certainly courted its fair share of controversy, it also got a lot of things very right, the Affleck/Damon partnership, Alan Rickman’s Metatron and Chris Rock’s fouled mouth apostle to name but a few.
The one that started it all. For a debut film, Clerks is REALLY good! Yeah, the acting can be a bit janky, but when your film is this well written, I think that can be forgiven. An ode to anyone that has had to work retail, Clerks with feel achingly familiar.
1: Chasing Amy.
After the reasonable success of both Clerks & Mallrats, Smith’s next movie, which he jokingly refers to as a foray into fantasy, presents us with a relatively grown up, compared to his previous work, tale of unconventional romance. A divisive film that garnered its fair share of criticism but was far more deserving of praise.