Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back

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Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (theatrical poster).jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byKevin Smith
Produced byScott Mosier
Written byKevin Smith
Starring
Music byJames L. Venable
CinematographyJamie Anderson
Edited by
  • Scott Mosier
  • Kevin Smith
Production
companies
Distributed byMiramax Films
Release date
  • August 24, 2001 (2001-08-24)
Running time
104 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$22 million[2]
Box office$33.8 million[2]

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back is a 2001 American comedy film written and directed by Kevin Smith, the fifth to be set in his View Askewniverse, a growing collection of characters and settings that developed out of his cult favorite Clerks. It focuses on the two eponymous characters, played respectively by Jason Mewes and Smith. The film features a large number of cameo appearances by famous actors and directors, and its title and logo for Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back are direct references to The Empire Strikes Back.

Originally intended to be the last film set in the Askewniverse, or to feature Jay and Silent Bob, Strike Back features many characters from the previous Askew films, some in dual roles and reprising roles from the previous entries. The film was a minor commercial success, grossing $33.8 million worldwide from a $22 million budget, and received mixed reviews from critics.

Five years later and following the commercial failure of Jersey Girl, Smith reconsidered and decided to continue the series with Clerks II, resurrecting Jay and Silent Bob in supporting roles. Smith announced in February 2017 that he was writing a sequel called Jay and Silent Bob Reboot and hoped to start filming in November 2018[3][4][5] for a tentative 2019 release.[6]

Plot[edit]

After getting a restraining order from Randal Graves (Clerks) for selling drugs outside the Quick Stop, Jay and Silent Bob find out from Brodie Bruce (Mallrats) that Bluntman and Chronic, the comic book based on their likenesses, has been adapted into a film in production by Miramax Films. In response, the two visit Holden McNeil (Chasing Amy), the co-writer of Bluntman and Chronic and demand royalties from the film. However, Holden tells Jay and Silent Bob that he sold his part of the creative and publishing rights of the comic over to his former friend Banky Edwards. Upon learning of the film, as well as the negative reaction it has received so far on the internet,[7] the two set out on a quest to Hollywood, to prevent the film from being made and tainting their image, or at the very least receive the money from the royalties owed to them.

On the way, they befriend an animal liberation group, consisting of four women: Justice, Sissy, Missy, and Chrissy; and one man, Brent, who they had picked up for the cause. It is revealed that the organization is a front; Brent is a patsy, intended as a diversion by freeing an animal from a testing laboratory while the girls rob a diamond depository nearby. Jay tricks Brent and throws him out of the van in order to get closer to Justice, with whom he is smitten. Justice, who becomes close to Jay and Silent Bob (particularly the former), reluctantly accepts the two as the new patsies.

While the girls are robbing the diamond depository, Chrissy farts loudly enough to set off the alarm, forcing them to break the glass and steal the diamonds. While this is going on Jay and Silent Bob free the animals and take an orangutan named Suzanne with them. They escape outside to see the police arriving and the van exploding, which they believe has killed the girls.

Jay then takes the orangutan with him as a memorial to Justice. Quickly afterwards, Federal Wildlife Marshal Willenholly (whose name is taken from the three characters in the TV show Land of the Lost: Marshal, Will and Holly[1]) shows up at the scene. Blinded to the diamond heist, he claims to have jurisdiction because of the large number of animals that escaped. He learns that all the animals have been recovered except for the orangutan. The officers then find and watch footage of a video Sissy recorded of Jay making remarks about "the clit", claiming to be "the Clit commander". The literature accompanying the tape says that "Clit" is an acronym for Coalition for the Liberation of Itinerant Tree-Dwellers. Willenholly blindly finds this as an act of terrorism and calls for police support to hunt down what he considered "the two most dangerous men on the planet."

When the officers later have the trio cornered inside a diner and threaten to open fire, Jay and Silent Bob dress the orangutan as a child and walk out, claiming that they want to get their "son" out of the danger zone. Willenholly, thinking about the political repercussions of arresting a gay couple, decides to let them leave, but he quickly realizes his mistake and resumes the chase. When they jump into a sewer system, only Willenholly himself follows them while the other police officers, led by the Sheriff, leave him, and he is soon tricked into jumping off a dam.

Having escaped the law, Jay and Silent Bob once again return to their quest to reach Hollywood, only to have Suzanne taken by a Hollywood animal acting agency car. Now on a quest to rescue Suzanne and clear their names, the two arrive in Hollywood and find themselves in the background of an E! News newscast about their online threat against Miramax. Justice watches the news and takes the diamonds to Hollywood to set things right. Marshal Willenholly learns of their mission to reach Hollywood and leaves to find them.

After a long chase with studio security and reclaiming Suzanne from a fictional Scream 4 in production, Jay and Silent Bob end up in Jason Biggs and James Van Der Beek's dressing room, where they quickly realize that these are the actors that will play the roles of Bluntman and Chronic. Suzanne beats both of them up effortlessly and Jay and Silent Bob assume the roles of their characters. Production staff throw them on stage with racist director Chaka Luther King, and they must engage in a duel with Mark Hamill playing a comic book supervillain called Cocknocker. Eventually Willenholly arrives to capture Jay and Silent Bob, but Justice arrives to save them. Justice admits that the CLIT organization was not real and that the two were used as a diversion while she, Missy, Sissy and Chrissy, were stealing jewels. As the rest of jewel thieves arrive, a climactic final battle ensues, after which Jay and Silent Bob get their royalties to the film from Banky, and Justice turns herself and her former team in to Willenholly in exchange for a shorter sentence and letting Jay and Silent Bob go.

The film ends with Jay and Silent Bob spending their royalty to locate everyone who expressed negative opinions on the internet about the movie and characters, ranging from kids to clergy, and traveling to their towns to beat them up. The scene then cuts to everyone leaving a movie theater, having just watched the Bluntman and Chronic movie and expressing negative reception. Jay and Silent Bob, with Justice and Willenholly, then go across the street to enjoy a performance from Morris Day and The Time.

After the credits, God closes the View Askewniverse book.[2]

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

The film was originally titled View Askew 5 and the title was changed to Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back". Filming began on January 14, 2001 and ended on April 19, 2001. Filming took in place in New Jersey, and mostly in California.

On Kevin Smith's podcast Jay & Silent Bob Get Old, Smith explained at length about how much of a "headache" the film was to make, mostly owing to Mewes' drug and alcohol abuse turning him into a "ticking time bomb", which threatened to shut the project down at any moment. During pre-production, Mewes would have constant mood swings due to heroin withdrawal, to the point that Smith actually threw him out of his car on their way to the set one day. Mewes would compensate for his lack of drugs by drinking heavily after every day of shooting and nearly got into a fist fight with Scott Mosier when he had to come back one night for a re-shoot while drunk (Mewes later said that he was too intoxicated to remember anything that happened during production). When the shoot wrapped, Smith told Mewes point-blank to get sober or he would never speak to him again.

Release[edit]

Box office[edit]

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back grossed $30.1 million in the United States and Canada and $3.7 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $33.8 million, against a production budget of $22 million.[2]

The film grossed $11 million in its opening weekend, finishing third at the box office behind two other comedy sequels, American Pie 2 ($12.5 million) and Rush Hour 2 ($11.6 million).[8]

Critical reception[edit]

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back received mixed reviews from critics. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 53% based on 152 reviews, with an average rating of 5.6/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Fans can expect a good laugh as the cast from Smith's previous films reunite for Jay and Silent Bob's last bow. The loose plotting and crude language may be too much for others though."[9] On Metacritic the film has a score of 51 out of 100, based on 31 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[10] Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale.[11]

Roger Ebert gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, writing that "[w]hether you will like 'Jay and Silent Bob' depends on who you are ... Kevin Smith's movies are either made specifically for you, or specifically not made for you".[12] Adam Smith of Empire gave the film 3/5 stars, writing that "[w]hen it's good it's very, very good, but when it's bad it's offensive", and noting that "the gag hit/miss ratio is really only about 50/50".[13] Scott Tobias of The A.V. Club wrote that "[e]ven at a slim 95 minutes, Jay And Silent Bob lets initially funny scenes trail off into long-winded monologues and silly digressions", and Elvis Mitchell of The New York Times called the film "[may]be the greatest picture ever made for 14-year-old boys. Mr. Smith may have hit his target, but he aimed very low."[14][15]

Home media[edit]

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back was released on VHS and Dimension Collector's Series two-disc DVD on February 26, 2002. A Blu-ray version of the film was released on September 19, 2006.

Soundtrack[edit]

Music from the Dimension Motion Picture Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
Jay and silent bob strike back OST Cover.jpg
Soundtrack album to the film Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back by Various artists
ReleasedAugust 14, 2001
RecordedVarious
GenreVarious
Length56:41
LabelUniversal
View Askewniverse soundtrack chronology
Dogma Music from the Dimension Motion Picture Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back Clerks II

Music from the Dimension Motion Picture: Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, the soundtrack to the film, was released on August 14, 2001 by Universal Records. Varèse Sarabande released the original score by James L. Venable. It alternates film dialogue with songs of various genres that appear in the film. It features the 2001 Afroman hit, "Because I Got High", whose music video featured the characters Jay and Silent Bob.

  1. Interlude: Cue Music by Jason Lee (as Brodie Bruce) – 0:03
  2. "Jay's Rap 2001" by Jason Mewes (as Jay) – 0:32
  3. "Kick Some Ass" by Stroke 9 – 4:05
  4. Holden on Affleck by Ben Affleck as Holden McNeil – 0:28
  5. "Tube of Wonderful" by Dave Pirner – 1:45
  6. Cyber Savvy by Ben Affleck and Jason Mewes (as Holden and Jay) – 0:07
  7. "Choked Up" by Minibar – 2:58
  8. Doobie Snacks by Jason Mewes (as Jay) – 0:08
  9. "Magic Carpet Ride" by Steppenwolf – 2:43
  10. Jay & Justice by Shannon Elizabeth and Jason Mewes (as Justice and Jay) – 0:11
  11. "Bad Medicine" by Bon Jovi – 3:55
  12. Stealing Monkeys – 0:08
  13. "This Is Love" by PJ Harvey – 3:45
  14. Advice from Above – 0:23
  15. "The Devil's Song" by Marcy Playground – 2:52
  16. Idiots vs. The Internet – 0:06
  17. "Tougher Than Leather" by Run-D.M.C. – 4:23
  18. Willenholly's Woe by Will Ferrell (as Willenholly) – 0:09
  19. "Bullets" by Bob Schneider – 4:22
  20. Touching a Brother's Heart by Jason Mewes and Tracy Morgan (as Jay and drug dealer) – 0:23
  21. "Hiphopper" by Thomas Rusiak featuring Teddybears STHLM – 4:46
  22. Two Thumbs Up by Chris Rock (as Chaka Luther King) – 0:07
  23. "Jackass" by Bloodhound Gang – 2:26
  24. A Smooth Pimp and a Man Servant by Jason Mewes (as Jay) – 0:16
  25. "Jungle Love" by Morris Day and The Time – 3:03
  26. NWP by Chris Rock (as Chaka Luther King) – 0:14
  27. "Because I Got High" by Afroman – 3:18

MPAA rating and GLAAD controversy[edit]

In August 2001, three weeks prior to release, the film came under fire from the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), for its "overwhelmingly homophobic tone",[16] which included an abundance of gay jokes and characters excessively using the term "gay" to mean something derogatory. The scenes deemed particularly offensive included Jay's vehement refusal of giving oral sex to a male driver when hitchhiking, and Jay chastising Silent Bob for being willing to perform fellatio on him to get the security guard to let them go. Following an advance screening of the film, former GLAAD media director Scott Seomin asked Smith to make a $10,000 donation to the Matthew Shepard Foundation, as well as to include a reference to GLAAD's cause in the ending credits.[17][18]

On the bonus DVD (176 minutes), Smith explains in the on-camera intros of the deleted scenes that several scenes had to be cut from the theatrical release, due to the film initially receiving an NC-17 rating from the MPAA. He also mentions in the audio commentary of the feature film that it took three submissions to the MPAA for the film to earn an R rating.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

^ According to Ethan Alter of Film Journal International, Smith did not intend to make another View Askewniverse film upon completion of Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, but only decided to do so several years later, following the unsuccessful release of Jersey Girl.[19]

^ Will Ferrell would later star in the 2009 film adaptation of Land of the Lost as Dr. Rick Marshall alongside Danny McBride as Will Stanton and Anna Friel as Holly Cantrell.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "JAY AND SILENT BOB STRIKE BACK (18)". British Board of Film Classification. September 4, 2001. Retrieved February 14, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 30, 2017.
  3. ^ ‘Jay and Silent Bob Reboot’ Is Kevin Smith’s New Film, ‘Clerks III’ and ‘Mallrats 2’ Are Dead
  4. ^ "Jay And Silent Bob Reboot' Set To Start Filming This Summer".
  5. ^ "Jay And Silent Bob Reboot Movie Shooting This Year". July 23, 2018. Retrieved August 1, 2018.
  6. ^ "KEVIN SMITH REVEALS 'JAY AND SILENT BOB REBOOT' DETAILS AND RELEASE DATE". May 29, 2018. Retrieved June 8, 2018.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 26, 2012. Retrieved July 3, 2013.
  8. ^ "Weekend Box Office: August 24-26, 2001". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved June 2, 2010.
  9. ^ Rotten Tomatoes
  10. ^ http://www.metacritic.com/movie/jay-and-silent-bob-strike-back
  11. ^ "CinemaScore". cinemascore.com.[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ Roger Ebert (24 August 2001). "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001) Movie Review". Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  13. ^ Adam Smith. "Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back Review". Empire. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  14. ^ Scott Tobias (31 August 2001). "Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  15. ^ Elvis Mitchell (24 August 2001). "FILM REVIEW; Hitchhiking in a Hurry: What Does That Tell You?". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  16. ^ Armstrong, Mark (August 2, 2001). "GLAAD Strikes Back at 'Silent Bob'". eonline.com. Retrieved June 2, 2010.
  17. ^ Ascher-Walsh, Rebecca (August 3, 2001). "GLAAD, Don't Get Mad". EW.com. Archived from the original on April 21, 2009. Retrieved June 2, 2010.
  18. ^ Smith, Kevin (July 31, 2001). "Some bad, bad news concerning me and GLAAD". viewaskew.com. Archived from the original on March 1, 2010. Retrieved June 2, 2010.
  19. ^ Alter, Ethan. "CLERKS II". Film Journal International. Retrieved June 27, 2013.

External links[edit]