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Mallrats (1995)
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Review Date: November 21, 1998
Director: Kevin Smith
Writer: Kevin Smith
Producers: James Jacks, Scott Mosier, Sean Daniel
Actors:
Jason Lee as Brodie
Shannon Doherty as Rene
Jeremy London as T.S. Quint
Claire Forlani as Brandi Svenning
Plot:
Best friends Brodie and T.S. both get dumped by their girlfriends on the same day, and attempt to rejuvenate their lives by spending another empty day in the nearby mall. The mall gives them plenty of time to run into friends, trouble and get arrested, as their plans to win back their girlfriends begin to crystallize.
Critique:
Excellent written dialogue, plotless plot, and sporadically weak acting qualify this film as a mediocre overly-juvenile teenage addition to the umpteen better films made in its very homage. I will be absolutely honest with you, and tell you that I hate to not love this movie because I am actually a huge personal Kevin Smith fan, but I cannot pretend that I enjoyed this flick much more than I really did. I will admit that as per Kevin's usual style, his dialogue was impeccably written, but spoken at too fast a pace by many of its actors, with too many inside jokes for anyone to grasp within that time. Add that to the fact that the Jay and Silent Bob roles seemed written just for the sake of physical gags, and I can't say that this follow-up to the film that inspired me to take my personal screenwriting seriously (CLERKS) is worthy of much more than a late Sunday afternoon rent session. Although the scene with the boys and the Easter Bunny is to die for! Having said that, I did love the acting job by Jason Lee, who seemed to relish his role of Brodie with great anger and furious appreciation. You could just tell that he really loved delivering his lines. Classic Smith.

Having said that, I thought the other main character in the film as portrayed by Jeremy London was boring and played rather unsuccessfully by said London. Forlani was also poor in her role as the "always looking nervous" girlfriend, while Affleck pulled off his dance as the macho A-hole magnificently. Now, despite the film having plenty of funny lines, it did also contain many duds, while others seemed scripted or just too literate to be uttered by the dudes in this film. Having said all that, I did enjoy most of the lines, and the boatload of movie homages (Off the top of my head, there were tender pokes at JAWS, BATMAN, GODFATHER, STAR WARS, APOCALYPSE NOW, and many others....) but was eventually bored by the ultimately anti-climactic dating game show ending, and the lack of consistency in the movie. Fans of Kevin Smith should check it out for fun, but others should watch it only if they enjoy well-written dialogue, comic books and movie references galore! Otherwise, get out there and rent one of the funniest and best-written films of all time...CLERKS!!!
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian
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