Movie Review: Clerks

You know the sensation: the feeling you get after gulping a slush drink too fast. The rush to your frozen noggin is unbearable for one brief, piercing moment. Then it stops. It’s a revelation, relief or rejuvenation. Writer/director Clerks (A) is like that instant of peace when you regain your equilibrium and once again feel ready to take on the world. It’s a delightful slacker comedy about a day in the life of two friends who work in an adjoining video shop and convenience store. Through a farcical display of raunchy, raucous dialogue, the film captures the wacky world of life on minimum wage. The wisdom of these foul mouthed philosophers should give solace to anyone who has ever contained fury at a customer or secretly desired to break the rules. Smith employs a non-linear approach with quick camera jerks and slow promenades over the absurdist landscape to fashion a monochrome masterpiece. Despite the snark, there’s a certain sweetness to the central duo’s friendship and a perverse charm to their assortment of strange friends and customers. This is strictly for folks who don’t mind a little residual cheese puff dust on their hands.

I've reviewed films for more than 20 years. Current movie reviews of new theatrical releases and direct-to-video or streaming films are added weekly to the Silver Screen Capture movie news site. Many capsule critiques originally appeared in expanded form in my syndicated Lights Camera Reaction column.

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Posted in 1994, Rent It Tonight

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