2013 / Steve Stark.
Review by Glenn Cochrane.
It all began so well. Kevin Smith arrived on the scene in the early 90s and announced himself as a renegade. CLERKS was an important and seminal independent film that flipped the bird to Hollywood and inspired a generation of filmmakers. With that Smith further explored the same universe and gave us two substantial follow-ups; MALLRATS and CHASING AMY. And then the downward spiral began and his subsequent movies, while not without merit, became less and less amusing. Smith had become a brand and his increasing cult status amongst stoners locked him into a position where he was compelled to feed his trolls. The legions of followers wanted dick jokes and pussy jokes and as many tokes of Jay as possible... and so be it. Smith rewarded them in spades and consequently lost an entire other audience whose threshold for vulgarity had its limits.
Jay & Silent Bob occupy the View Askewniverse, which to date is made up of 6 movies (2 more on the way), a few shorts, a TV series and several comic books. It's a franchise that has afforded Smith many luxuries and a platform to preach an evangelical-like message to the world. He tours the globe with Jason Mewes (Jay) and performs to sell-out venues, mostly full of stoners. I don't knock him for what he has created and the wealth it has brought him, but there is no doubt that he sold out long ago.
The biggest sell-out point in the ongoing View Askewniverse is also its lowest point. JAY & SILENT BOB'S SUPER GROOVY CARTOON MOVIE is an appalling demonstration of vulgarity. Such a term "demonstration of vulgarity" is normally reason to celebrate in my books, but this dumb fucking movie serves no purpose. At a pathetic 60 minute running time we are assaulted with 58 minutes of Jason Mewes spewing a verbal diarrhea of sex, pussy, dope & dick jokes. The plot is too dumb to bother with and involves aliens and superheroes. We are "treated" to erections, ejaculations and penetration... on cycle.
JAY & SILENT BOB'S SUPER GROOVY CARTOON MOVIE is little more than a cash-in project. A poorly animated plop of cartoon that doesn't even come close to resembling the ill-fated CLERKS ANIMATED SERIES. Without the assistance of marijuana there is nothing to be taken from it. Kevin Smith appears sporadically as self-referential animated version of himself and more or less tells the viewer that his pockets are well lined. The funniest thing of all is that no matter how scathing I could be towards this movie, it won't make a lick of difference. It's one for the fans and they will lap it up regardless. This is what they want and we should pity them.... poor little losers that they are*.
The good news is that Smith has somewhat freed himself from the confines of the View Askewniverse and has demonstrated the audacity of his early years with a shift in genre. RED STATE and TUSK are proof that he is still a relevant and daring filmmaker.... but he will keep milking that cash cow all the same and the ball is rolling on MALLRATS 2 and CLERKS 3.
*Said facetiously. Or not. I can't tell.