Renegade Staff Picks: Best Kevin Smith Movies

Kevin Smith movies
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Best Kevin Smith Movies

 

Kevin Smith movies

Dogma

Eric Norcross: Highly original and I suspect a somewhat personal project for the filmmaker. I got the impression Dogma was a passion project that he struggled to gather funding for since it’s mentioned at the end of Clerks (yet it wasn’t the film he made immediately after). It was also his first 35mm endeavor with a professional cinematographer and Hollywood level cast. This was the first movie I followed as it moved into pre-production through release and is the first leaked script I’ve ever read.

Caliber Winfield: The story alone is one of the most creative I’ve ever heard. The movie itself is absolutely fantastic, and a perfect example of why Kevin Smith is underrated. We get a fantastic cast, a story that gives you a message without forcing it, and a message that’s actually worth paying attention to, action, well done comedy, and a bit of a mystery as well. It’s not just Kevin Smith’s best movie, but it’s one of the better movies of all time. Great stuff.

Derek Johns: I’ll admit I’ve never been a huge fan of Kevin Smith. Nevertheless I still had no trouble enjoying Dogma, although it probably helped that they had Alan Rickman for this film. For some reason, one scene I’ve always particularly enjoyed is when the disgraced angels Loki and Bartleby casually perform vengeance upon a group of amoral executives.

Caleb Masters: Kevin Smith has made a number of movies that I’ve found myself relating to, but in my mind, none of them comes close to Dogma. Kevin Smith’s movies are all very personable, but Dogma lays Smith’s struggle with his Catholic upbringing to the forefront through the eyes of Damon’s Loki and Affleck’s Bartleby. These two characters wrestling with their purpose and identity is indicative of Smith’s own coming to terms with his spirituality and it makes for the sharpest piece of satire to ever to hit the View Askewniverse. Kevin Smith is a very polarizing director, but even for naysayers Dogma is a must see.

Bethany Lewis: I love Dogma partly because it takes obscure aspects of a well known religion and reworks them into a modern epic. I think I also love Dogma because there are very few movies in which the heroine is called Bethany – and this heroine is definitely someone to whom I can relate. She may be cynical, but she’s smart and resourceful and has a taste for the absurd and ironic (in the true literary sense, not the false Alanis Morissette sense). I also just love seeing real life friends and creative partners Ben Affleck and Matt Damon pal around on screen together in such a dynamic and playful way. While they play their parts with the utmost professionalism, it is clear that they do it with a wink and a nod to the audience. And where else can you see George Carlin as a Cardinal of the church…now that’s inspired casting!

Ruby Le Rouge: Chasing Amy hits a little too close to home, so I’m going to go with Dogma. I loved the ideas behind it, even if the script is a little heavy handed.
As an Arizona resident and devout atheist, the greatest truth of this movie was said by Jason Lee’s character Azrael, “No pleasure, no rapture, no exquisite sin greater… than central air.” Plus Alan Rickman is always a win for me.

 

Kevin Smith movies

Red State

James Cochrane: For years it was Chasing Amy. Then I grew up and stopped caring at all- thought Smith was a hack who only enjoyed Fart jokes- see Dogma for that retarded Shit Monster. But Red State revealed that Kevin Smith was not only a great writer, but also a great director. Smart, suspenseful; a remarkably scary film… and mature. After Red State my opinion about Kevin Smith changed: He is good at what he does he just chose to make dick and fart joke laden stories. Now, I still think Dogma, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Mallrats as complete turds, but! and it’s a big but! I respect his decision to make those films. Red State is such a damn fine movie that sometimes I get overwhelmed in my love for it. I’m like a born-again christian in how I push it on people. I want more of this man. I am desperate to see Tusk, and emphatically plead for Smith to not retire but to make more films of this nature- not horror, necessarily- grown-up stories for grown up people. Welcome, Kevin Smith, to adulthood.

 

Kevin Smith movies

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back

Tamica Phipps: Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back is the movie I remember the most.

 

Kevin Smith movies

 

Mallrats

Shawn S. Lealos: Yes, I would normally say Dogma, but since almost everyone else chose it, I want to head to a secondary choice. I am a pretty huge fan of Kevin Smith’s comedy. Sure, as James said it is a lot of fart jokes, but I don’t mind if they make me laugh and through most of his career, Kevin Smith has always made me laugh. Mallrats was a flop when it came out, but I feel it was just ahead of its time. Honestly, There’s Something About Mary and American Pie came out after Mallrats, and were the exact same type of humor. I loved Mallrats when it came out and still laugh when I watch it today.

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About the Author

Shawn S. Lealos
Shawn is a film critic with over 25 years of experience in print and online media. He is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle and loves everything from critically acclaimed movies to B-level action flicks.
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