Clerks III is Kevin Smith's most personal script since his first– and best executed film since Chasing Amy – but from now a director with 30 years of experience under his tightening belt.
This is a treasure trove of many characters to tell a single story – all of Kevin's toys. Instead of a story for brand new characters back in Clerks days.
Silent Bob the cinematographer as a character is great. The jump cuts to the re-creation of Clerks scenes are great – while Dan Tee has that Harrison Ford utility, despite always being clearly the Skywalker of this trilogy.
Like Hamill, Ford, and Fisher, Brian O'Halloran, Jeff Anderson, and Mewes reach right back around on thirty years of work.
The third act does go up itself a bit where Randal is rewriting the ending of the movie, just as Smith did himself with Clerks III script, but then a little Sixth Sense, Jedi-like walkaways for one/two of the characters is pure brilliance – and does harken back to the 90s when Smith was still exercising – and exorcising - his original ideas like Dogma, or character ending you may have seen in special features to Clerks.
Just as Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back 20 plus years ago felt like a closing chapter to View Askew Universe 1.0, so Clerks III one does as well for VAU 2.0.
VAU 3.0 is alive and well with TUSK$ (2), Kilroy Was Here, our friends Moose Jaws, and Yoga Hosers Too: Milk Maids.
To think I watched this and Confess, Fletch back-to-back, and found C:3 (in 37-D?) much more emotional and more of a film than Fletch.
Then again, Smith has conquered his Fletch-itch with Cop Out.
Perhaps the only issue is that Smith himself is so accessible – the Clerks III plot here while solid – is almost non-existent if you are part of the Kevin Smith Club or a podcast frequent flyer.
It does come across as ticking all the boxes.
Which I guess isn't a bad thing.