This is the first film of Kevin Smith, who directed my favourite
current film, Chasing Amy.
I missed Clerks when it was at the cinemas, and have just caught up
with it on video.
I guess the first thing to say is this is one of those (rare) films
where I don't think it matters that you don't see it in a cinema. It is
shot in grainy black-and-white in a jerky, funky style which works well
on the small screen. You'd think first-time-director Smith is
deliberately downplaying his camerawork in a display of humility. In
fact, I believe it was shot in the New Jersey convenience store for
$27,000. It looks like it. And yet, with his third film, Chasing Amy,
he hasn't progressed much, visually. The man still just points the
camera at the characters and shoots. It works...
Clerks is funny, filthy and lighthearted, but it is really more
interesting as a forerunner of Chasing Amy than it is in its own right.
The issues Smith begins to explore in Clerks reach maturity in Chasing
Amy. But it is quite fascinating to see the germs of the ideas as Smith
dealt with them 3 years earlier. The fabulous Jay and Silent Bob appear
for the first time here, as does the name "Alyssa Jones".
Now I really must catch up with Mallrats, the middle film of the Smith