Two Depressing Movies I Saw.

I feel betrayed. Before I get into the first movie I saw on Sunday after the Seahawks lost to the Bears, let me get into it with Kevin Smith. Before, I said I rented two movies on Saturday. One of them was Clerks II.

When this movie first hit theaters last summer, I wanted to go see it, because I was such a fan of the first Clerks movie. On the road trip, I even had the chance, but I didn't feel like waiting around for over an hour, so instead I saw Miami Vice. Now, I'm glad. I'm oh so fucking glad.

Clerks II is a heaping pile of shit, don't go see it. I don't know where Kevin Smith got this newfound sentimentality, but either it has to stop or HE has to stop making movies, because I can't take no fuckin' more! First of all, do you want to tell me why this movie was even necessary? Was there some online petition dedicated to souring me on all early Kevin Smith movies? Did someone wake up one morning and wonder what a diluted carbon copy of a cult classic might look like? Who gave the guy who plays Randal a copy of the last American Pie movie with Stifler looking like a manic, trying-too-hard coke whore and told him to, "Act it like this"? And THEN who decided it was a good idea to completely take away Randal's balls? Were Jay and Silent Bob SUPPOSED to be so unenthusiastic and boring, childlike caricatures of their once immutable selves? And, at the end, when Silent Bob's supposed to deliver the film's words of reason, don't give me this, "I got nothin'" shit! GOD!

The soundtrack to this move was pitiful! There was two or three extended montage sequents where music is playing in the background. First, we had some gay ass song playing while Dante and Randal went to "Blow off some steam" by driving on bumper go-karts. Really? OK, in your 30s and driving around on bumper go-karts. Whatever. Was it necessary to make the entire sequence boring and unfunny? Kevin Smith circa 1994 would've had Randal mercilessly attacking some poor kid, driving him off the course and into a nearby pond full of hippo excrement or something. But no, just Dante and Randal having a gay ass good time. Second, we had this hackneyed, contrived scenario where Dante is confiding to Rosario Dawson that "He Can't Dance" and he's worried about this fact in relation to his upcoming wedding with The Woman He Doesn't REALLY Love, But She Provides Him The Security He Really Needs Even Though The Woman Of His Dreams Is Right In Front Of Him ... Rosario Dawson. Of COURSE, Rosario volunteers to "Teach Him How To Dance" and here we go. Really? In your 30s and can't dance AND you give a shit about this? OK, so they go on the roof, and obviously he dances terribly ... but wait! What's that music they've got playing in the background? Why, it's Jackson Fucking 5's "ABC!" Tell me again why this song is necessary to the film? And TELL ME why Kevin Smith unnecessarily brought in this dance troupe to do this big dance routine while the Rosario Dawson Dance Lesson is going on? Comedy? Not hardly. Finally, towards the end of the movie, after Dante tells Rosario Dawson that he loves her, they both have to go off and be alone to "Think Things Through." What song do I hear playing in the background during this scene? Smashing Pumpkins - 1979. What is this, a 1996 middle school dance? You know Kevin Smith has fallen off the map of cutting edge filmmakers when, during this scene, you see Dante in his car pondering the thought of being a father while gazing into the eyes of a child who smiles at him from a restaurant window. Gag me with a FUCKING spoon!

You also know Kevin Smith has lost it when he gives the greatest roll and the film's greatest writing to a woman. If Rosario Dawson wasn't in this movie (especially in that dance scene when it's nothing but five minutes of her tits jiggling up and down ... probably the most underrated rack in show business), Clerks II would be wholly unwatchable. Then again, I have to wonder if it's not BECAUSE of her. Maybe, if Kevin Smith didn't castrate everything by forcing a woman of such grace and personality to dominate the film with her presence alone, we could've appreciated the rest of the cast for the fucking bunch of losers that they are - like in the original Clerks. I don't buy that completely, though, because there was no saving this movie. It could've helped, though, if it was Randal providing the saving grace for Dante vis-a-vis his doomed engagement and impending wedding to Some Dumb Skank. But, instead, in the end we're left with Randal pleading to Dante like a simpering little girl. I couldn't be more disgusted.


After the game, I couldn't go home. Granted, later on what proved to be the cure for my post-playoffs-depression was being in a room full of people who couldn't give two shits about sports period, but at the time, I needed to be alone. I needed to sober up. I needed greasy pizza in my stomach. I headed over to Times Square.

After dinner, I went to the theater and bought a ticket to see "Children of Men." This movie blew me away, I can't get over how good it is. The world has become sterile for the last 18 years; people can no longer bring babies to term. Chaos rules everywhere, Britain is the only country managing some semblance of order, even though they need an army's guidance to keep people in line and to keep foreigners to the refugee camps. It is discovered that a foreign woman is pregnant; they can't give her over to the government because the government won't stand for the first baby being born in two decades to be of foreign descent. The Human Project is this group of outlaws or something, the salvation for the mother and her new baby.

I won't give away any more than that right now, but I'll say this. There's a scene where this large building is under siege by a gaggle of army troops and their tanks. Rebels are inside the building with machine guns fighting back. The main character infiltrates the building, runs all around, finds the mother and her child, and escorts her out so they can get to The Human Project in time. There's this moment when he's walking her out of the building, she's clutching the baby to her bosom, and as they're slowly walking out, everyone around them stops whatever they're doing, transfixed. All these refugees are in awe of seeing the first child in decades. No one says a thing until they walk towards the door and meet the first wave of troops - one of the soldiers bellows to everyone to hold their fire. The main character and the mother continue walking, this time through the horde, all the while all the soldiers stop and stare in similar amazement. Everything, all the chaos that had been going on for the last ten minutes, becomes totally serene and tranquil. Eerily so. Then, all of a sudden, after the main character and the mother get past everything, someone fires from the building, and the siege has abruptly returned. That's the kind of impactful moviemaking you don't see all the time.

See "Children of Men" if you get the chance. Rent it when it comes out if you have to, but don't forget about it. There's so much right about this movie at a time when there's so much wrong about moviemaking in general. Children of Men and Clerks II, at opposite ends of the spectrum of Good & Bad, both utterly depressing for vastly different reasons.