Scene 5 – Chasing Amy

Been going on a Kevin Smith buzz for the last week or so spending a lot of my free time revisiting his old podcast and tv shows…this led me to this weeks movie, his 1997 film Chasing Amy.  Just a warning that both this review and the movie contain one or two ‘French fancy’ words that are not for everyone’s taste…you have been warned.

Without a doubt, Chasing Amy is one Kevin Smith’s best works as both a writer and director…and a personal favourite of mine. Coming off his critically bashed film Mallrats….fucking critics!…Chasing Amy delivers a masterclass in how to write dialogue, even if that dialogue is based around dick jokes…that shit is hilarious. The film is aided by the usual Smith suspects, plus one or two acting additions earning every laugh they get. Smith produces an amazingly contrived story with weird twists, that  produces some moments disbelief…..and my man crush goes on and on…cue the guy love song…

Ok, so the story starts off with the duo of Holden (Ben Bat’ffleck) and Banky (Jason Lee), who are the creative partners of the popular comic ‘Bluntman and Chronic’.  At a comic convention, Holden meets another comic creator, Alyssa (Joey Lauren Adams), who he instantly lusts over….later to find out that she was a lesbian, in one of my favourite scenes…actually the whole time they spend in the nightclub amazing….not spoil it, but all I’ll say about it is.…Jason Lee!! Lee is one guy I really miss on the screen…and Im still hoping that one day he will stop looking at things like ‘My name is crap’ and that chipmunk nonsense….and give Smith a call.  Back to the plot, so despite this revelation, Holden and Alyssa become good friends until Holden finds it impossible to stop himself from falling for her…resulting in the rest of the story being about this turbulent relationship.

Fanboying up about this movie and how Smith directed and edited straight after shooting became evident as it is consistently well-directed, with Smith getting probably Affleck’s best performance of his career till Good Will Hunting and the Dogma.…Christ don’t get me started on Dogma. Ok let me stop drooling and continue…the development of characters and conversations hits a peak with Chasing Amy which Smith has become iconic for. The development is funny, filthy and emotional, combining around general interesting and witty topics, accumulating into one gigantic satisfying payoff……are we still talking about the film?…yes, get you head outta the gutter… I say that but the first quote I have written down is when Holden cites a story about a young kid calling a nun a ‘fucking cunt-rag’…shockingly genius coming from Smith and his Catholic upbringing.

Chasing Amy is as edgy now as it was when it was released in 1997.  Same can be said for Smith’s unique insight, which is always fresh and depicts interesting commentaries on relationships raising entertaining and thoughtful scenarios. Chasing Amy is a must see for any up and coming writer or lover of edgy cinema. The only thing I ask is to rewatch the nightclub scene when Holden is dancing and imagine that was exactly what he did when they announced ‘Bat’ffleck’….thats what I did…and I just stood and applauded.

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