11.27.2008

A Kevin Smith Renaissance


Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

I'm currently in the midst of my last bachelor's Thanksgiving. My fiancée is in Chicago visiting her family and chiseling away at our wedding To Do List. So it's me and los gatitos. So I'm making the most of it. Eating whatever I want. Drinking some beers. And watching an obscene number of movies.

Recently I've been experiencing a Kevin Smith renaissance. So it seems fitting that I'd have a Kevin Smith Thanksgiving. I'm rewatching the Jersey trilogy, and Clerks II. Because it'll be fun, I love the the extras on those discs, and it'll be good to center myself. A healthy reminder of someone who wrote honestly about what he had in him to say. And someone who had some major balls.

I remember when I first saw Clerks. There were two people who opened my eyes to the mechanics of filmmaking when I was a movie-obsessed teenager. One was a guy named Jeff Tanzi. And the other was Sarah Croco, who also introduced me to Clerks.

I was a conceited little film snob even then. And it was hard for me to swallow something outside my little Scorsese-Egoyan-Bertolucci world. And I refused to cop to the admiration and envy I had at this brazen, self-made production. But the movie always stuck with me. And I kept watching it and rewatching it. It would take years, for some reason, for me to admit how much I admired this movie.

And then in my freshman year of college, I lived next to a group of skeevy motherfuckers who were often drunk and living by the bible of Jason Mewes. And they basically watched the same four movies over and over and over throughout that year. I don't know if they only owned those four movies, or if they were just loyal fans. But one of them was Mallrats. Like everyone else, I never saw it in the theaters. But I saw it in various bits and pieces repeatedly over the span of that year and it's ingrained in some corner of my mind.

Mallrats holds a special place in my film geek heart. And I've been inexorably drawn to Smith's movies ever since. He was a very visible filmmaker for anyone who grew up in the nineties, but I don't think he gets enough props among those of us of that group who are now trying to do what he does.

Smith is true to himself. He's honed his voice with a craftsman's expertise. He's a hardworking writer and filmmaker. And he's made a lot of movies that I really respect.

And I'm due to rewatch a lot of them -- and to laugh and remind myself of where I'm at and how I should be going about my own work.

So, to Kevin Smith, on this day, thanks.

ps. Call me Donny.

2 comments:

Jeff said...

I remember that year, too, Adam. Good times! Mallrats, Casino, Braveheart and Animal House. Those were the four movies -- probably the best four movies EVER in the history of MAN (excluding The Dark Knight). Am I right or am I right?

PS, Cards are gonna get Khalil Greene. Woo hoo. Can you tell how (*insert sarcasm*) excited I am?

Jeff said...

I remember that year, too, Adam. Good times! Mallrats, Casino, Braveheart and Animal House. Those were the four movies -- probably the best four movies EVER in the history of MAN (excluding The Dark Knight). Am I right or am I right?

PS, Cards are gonna get Khalil Greene. Woo hoo. Can you tell how (insert sarcasm) excited I am?