After the surprising success of Clerks, there was really no doubt that Kevin Smith would be back with another audacious film about slackers and the crazy lives that they have. Little did everyone know that he would create a whole universe of interlocking characters that would be seen again and again. His sophomoric outing, Mallrats, gives that audience another perspective of the world he had created: the side of the consumer.
After Brodie (Jason Lee) and his best friend, T.S. (Jeremy London), both get dumped on the same day, they do what any other slacker would do to get their minds off of their worries: go hang out at the mall. While there they both run into their respective girlfriends and decide that they are happier with them than without them, so with the help of Jay and Silent Bob (Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith) they set out to sabotage a game show featuring T.S.’ ex and exposing the crimes of Brodie’s girlfriend’s love interest, the slime ball Shannon Hamilton (Ben Affleck).
The first thing that you might notice about Mallrats is that it looks absolutely nothing like Clerks. The budget of Mallrats is exorbitantly higher than his first film. Another major difference is that Mallrats is a lot less cynical. There’s a light mood that is always present and the silliness of the random occurrences are turned up a notch to deliver a great farcical comedy about America’s consumers.
There is a lot more physical and overt humor in this film. This is the weakest point of the movie. Seeing Silent Bob crash through a wall is funny the first time, but seeing him fall over again and again is a bit much. The real comedy stems from the characters and dialogue, which is really how I feel about most comedies. Kevin Smith has once again crafted such excellent and relatable characters that they truly feel like real people whom you care for.
The character of Brodie is an absolute riot. He’s callous, rude, and slightly perverted but he is just the hero a Kevin Smith film needs. I probably not would want to hang out with him in real life, but I enjoyed spending an hour and a half with him through the film medium. Do I even need to comment on Jay and Silent Bob? Anyone who knows me knows that they are two of my most favorite characters. The dynamic duo has a much bigger role in this movie and their actions legitimately affect the story.
While watching Mallrats, I felt like I didn’t need to worry about the story (or lack thereof) an just focus on the characters and the environment around them. This is a film to purely enjoy without too much thought. Sure, there can be discussion about the characters and what they were all about, but this isn’t a brain buster nor is the comedy hidden deep within the dialogue.
Anyone can enjoy Mallrats. This really is a very easy movie to laugh at and enjoy. The characters, the atmosphere, the awesome cameo, and the dialogue is puts this film above many other comedies. If you enjoy Kevin Smith films or just comedies in general, then make sure you check out Mallrats.