Mallrats This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

March 27, 2010
Soon after the release, and unexpected success, of Clerks, Kevin Smith was relentless about the idea of making another film. So, literally a year after the release of his first film, Smith's new picture released to much-understood hype. The result? A film that, while still funny, lacked the wit and great characters that made Clerks so great to begin with.

Mallrats follows the escapades of T.S. and Brody, both of whom had broken up with their girlfriends earlier in the day. Now, in a feeble and mind-numbingly-bored way, the two attempt to forget their losses during a trip to their 'home away from home' - the mall. Fortunately or unfortunately, though, it turns out that both of the friends' girlfriends are at the mall that day, meaning each may have one last chance to get their respective partner back before the day's over.

I had mixed feelings about virtually the entire movie. I liked some of the film's new characters, such as Brody, but a lot of the others just really fell flat. William, for instance, was a one-joke character and the actress playing Brandi - T.S.'s girlfriend - gave a borderline awful performance. It was just a mixed bag, though I'm thankful for the presence of Kevin Smith's greatest characters, Jay and Silent Bob.

If compared to Clerks, I will admit that Mallrats' visuals are far superior. The camera's far less static, the shots more planned out, etc. and so forth. It may not be completely obvious to the average viewer, but one has to hand it to Smith for such a major boost in the visual department.

The comedy in the film is pretty hit-and-miss. On one hand, there are some genuinely funny scenes in the film and show the style of Smith's humor. On the other hand, though, the film tries way too hard to be "mainstream" which, in turn, makes it lose a lot of the wit that Smith's first film had. Not only that, but some of the scenes just come off as being really cheesy ala Silent Bob dressed as Batman. A lot works, but sadly a lot doesn't work as well.

Other than that, there's not too much else to say about Mallrats. It's got Smith's style of humor, but the newer characters aren't particularly interesting, the wit's gone, and some of the jokes can really fall flat. For what it's worth, though, the film's still funny and entertaining enough to make it worthy of Kevin Smith's name. It's not Smith's best work, but it's still worth a watch.





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