Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
Review by Susu and Wraith6
Director: Kevin Smith
Rating: Imperial Star Destroyer
First, what you heard is true: this movie is a series of nods to other movies. And an ongoing train of cameo appearances, from well-known Kevin Smith regulars Affleck, Damon and Mewes, to cultural icons George Carlin, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill. And silly and funny to boot!
Second, the story is really as simple as the title implies: Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Kevin Smith) learn that a "Bluntman and Chronic" movie is being made featuring their comic book counterparts, as formerly drawn by Holden (Affleck) and Bankey (Lee). At the same time, they discover the Internet, and come to understand it as a forum for anonymous cretins to spout their opinions without fear of reprisal. Fearing that the criticisms of the "fictional movie within a movie" characters will ruin their "real" good names, they embark for Hollywood to stop "them" from making the film. Holden and comic book store owner Brodie (also played by Lee) encourage the lads to demand their cut of the profits from Bankey -- who received full control of the comics when he and Holden split (in Chasing Amy) -- when they get to Hollywood.
Almost because they needed parts for everyone who wanted to be in this film (it was announced as the last film using this "New Jersey Suite" -- see Kelly Grosskreutz's review of Kevin Smith films -- so lots of people wanted in!), they created odd subplots. On the way, they meet a very familiar-looking nun, very familiar teens with a familiar dog in a familiar cartoon van, international lesbian jewel thieves cum animal testing activists, a failed FBI applicant, a very smart orangutan, a hitchhiker who preaches to them the rules of the road, a Jedi master, half the cast of American Pie (or it just seemed so), and both Jay and Bob fall in love (though not with each other, despite being declared heterosexual life mates).
If you've followed Kevin Smith's work faithfully -- movies and otherwise -- you'll recognize plot from the comic book Chasing Dogma, which filled in Jay and Silent Bob's doing and happenings between Chasing Amy and Smith's biggest hit, Dogma. That comic didn't make a splash of any sort among the general population, so Smith probably felt it was okay to lift it intact and plonk it in as the major subplot in this movie.
There are a lot of snickering little references in this movie, as a sort of romp through Kevin Smith's personal American memory lane jaunt... the Wildlife officer is named Marshall Willenholly, the first line of the theme song from Land of the Lost (Marshall, Will, and Holly ...). His friend at the FBI is named Sidenmarty (as in Sid and Marty Croft, creators of Land of the Lost, H. R. Puff 'n Stuff, Sigmund the Sea Monster, etc.). Affleck and Matt Damon get to play themselves in a Good Will Hunting II outtake, where Will gets to go hunting, Moobie the Golden Calf gets shot, the clerks at the Quick Stop razz each other about why their ABC network cartoon got cancelled, the "girls" wear pleather so tight that Emma Peel could only sigh enviously, they rob jewels referencing any jewel theft movie from Mission Impossible, The Pink Panther, some Catherine Zeta-Jones thing, Charlie's Angels, complete with sound detectors that look suspiciously like birth control pill cases (though what Lesbians would need with such things, we don't know).
Watching this movie is like being a member of some dorky club. You know everyone's name and backgrounds, you can hardly stand that they are so idiotic, but its comforting to see the old rituals, the dumb dances, make the same bad gay jokes. This DVD has all of the cut scenes, a lot of "this is my buddy," "this guy and I worked together since we first started smoking," "this is my wife and little me," etc. type of explanations by Kevin Smith, and its shot in Jay and Silent Bob's Stash and Stuff, which really does exist in Redbank, NJ. It's Kevin Smith's life, where he gets to cast his friends in his movies and has a hell of a time doing it. It shows, and its a fun, dorky movie. Go and enjoy it.
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