1. Mallrats is an exceedingly large production compared to Clerks. Think only about the different locations between the two films. Convenience/Video Store vs. 2 malls in 2 different states. The Mall in MN was somewhat of a ghost town during the filming period so they were able to customize the stores more than a typical mall (Carpet Munchers and Buy Me Toys). The grandure of the production seems to detract from the meat of the film. Whereas Clerks was carried by it's dialogue.
2. Budget was of little concern to Smith (who made Clerks for chump change) for this film. Seemingly unlimited funds facilitated a "kitchen sink" mentality. "We've got enough money to do this, this and this" As opposed to "This or that". So Mallrats is a little fat around the middle.
3. Acting - Be honest. After seeing this movie, did you think you'd ever see Jeremy London in another film? This guy couldn't act his way out of a paper bag. (Probably explains why he's on Seventh Heaven now.) Jason Lee is Jason Lee. Certainly not up for an Oscar, but convincing and charismatic. The rest of the cast is about average. I'm not suggesting we should expect top-notch acting here but at least make it natural.
I can't blame Kevin Smith for wanting to strike while the iron was hot here, but with a little more time and a little more focus, this could have been much better film. Smith may have been in a "This is my one big shot, so I'm gonna show 'em everything I got" mindset. Smith figured out the patience factor with Chasing Amy and honed his directing skills in Dogma.
The soundtrack to Mallrats saves experience for me. Anyone who includes Archers of Loaf deserves a break.
Cast: Shannen Doherty ... Rene Mosier
Jeremy London ... T.S. Quint
Jason Lee ... Brodie Bruce
Claire Forlani ... Brandi Svenning
Ben Affleck ... Shannon Hamilton
Joey Lauren Adams ... Gwen Turner
Renée Humphrey ... Tricia Jones
Jason Mewes ... Jay
Ethan Suplee ... Willam Black
Stan Lee ... Himself
Kevin Smith ... Silent Bob
Director: Kevin Smith
Tagline: "They're not there to shop. They're not there to work. They're just there."
Plot Summary: Two best friends whose girlfriends dump them on the same day seek solace in wandering around the local mall. Once there, wild and whacky events ensue that give them a chance to set things right with their girlfriends before it's too late.
Review and Comments: Words cannot describe what happens in this movie, it's one of those "you had to be there" kind of things...that's why the plot summary won't do the story justice. And once you see it, you either buy into it and like what you see, or you're violently annoyed by the proceedings. I can fully understand both reactions, but I'm firmly on the side of enjoying this movie. Yes, it's absurd. A lot of the comedy is slapstick. Yes, it involves a slacker college-age guy taking his less-of-a-slacker college student friend to wander around the mall the day they both experience breakups. Yes, they get into a bunch of weird and quirky situations that are either funny or annoying, depending on your sense of humor. I laughed a lot.
The relationships are about as one-dimensional as you can get. I think there's too much weird humor going on here for me to get too involved with the characters. But I appreciate how much these guys love their girlfriends.Read more ›