Chasing Amy (1997)

Kevin Smith’s third big film after Clerks and Mallrats was Chasing Amy.  I haven’t watched this in years.  I always felt this was the weakest of his first 5-6 films, but I still liked it.  Now, 10+ years later, I need to really revisit this.  I owned this on VHS and DVD.

This stars Ben Affleck, so that’s an issue.  It also stars Joey Lauren Adams, who I have long had a raging clue for, even when she was on Married With Children.  Then there is Ethan Suplee, who has been in a lot of Smith’s flicks, but also American History X and Remember the Titans.  Jason Lee is also a dude that I have long enjoyed in most of his projects.

The conference/panel with the white hating black dude, Hooper, that is a fantastic scene.  It’s a great way to start off.  As soon as Hooper and Banky are off screen, the film goes to hell for me.  I’m 20 minutes in and I absolutely loathe Ben and his character.  OK, wait, things got better.  Ben got super sad and 2 hot chicks made out simultaneously.  Kim is awful, just straight up awful, which I assume is the character’s purpose.  The whole going down on chick’s stuff is pretty spot on.  “Since you like chicks, do you just look at yourself in the mirror?”  Fucking Matt Damon, but Brian O”Halloran redeems that a bit.

The whole losing your virginity standard thing is a really smart conversation.  Her demonstration of her hand up a girl’s pussy, well that is actually the one thing I remembered from this flick.  Fucking Ben, he bails on his buddy for this girl.  Un-fucking-real!  That is how you lose all man credibility from my perspective.  Not just in film, but in real life.  It’s one of the those things that you just don’t do when you and your buddy are about to go out and do something.  Total dick move, and of course Ben was portrayed as doing it.  The montage was meh, minus them playing NHL 94 or 95 I am guessing.

When Bankey gives Ben the fucking business and tells it like it is, that is my third scene that I have really enjoyed.  Dudes should always tell other dudes when they are wasting their fucking time and changing, often for the worse.  Ben really nailed the “I love you” speech, so there, I’m not always Mr. Negativity.  He response was also damn good, and inevitable.  Yes, I empathize with Ben Affleck of all people.  Just shoot.  Load the gun, point it an fat, spherical dome, and pull the trigger.  When Bankey has the talk with Ben after coming home, it was smart and well done.

Man, that room of lesbians was a real bring me down.  I can’t imagine being in a room full of dudes, a dude comes out of the closet, and everybody just being a dick about it.  Jokes?  Yeah, most likely, but their tone was something altogether different.  That finger cuffs story…..good stuff.  “I’m working out, ya know?”  Haha. Oh, I see the Pulp Fiction soundtrack, which was tremendous. Man, the CD’s in the background, Fugees, Alannis, a few others that I owned.

Man, Ben’s pouty, man thing where he is brooding and waiting to bring something up, haha, spot on.  I love how this scene builds up, it’s really fucking good, with the heartbeat sound.  The thing is, he’s not wrong in what he did.  I probably would have asked in a better place.  Her flipping out about it, typical female.  Jesus, she is ridiculous.  I would have just said “calmer than you” repeatedly during this scene.  She was at fault, and then yells at him.  Good job Kevin Smith in capturing the female form.  How is Joey Lauren Adams not an A lister?  I have been wondering this for 20 years now.

Yay, Jay and Silent Bob!  Jason Mewes never ceases to make me laugh.  Jay makes all the sense in the world about why Ben should be happy.  I mean, yes, lies happen, but you gotta let it go and move forward with whatever it is that makes you happy, or be a miserable fuck.  Then Bob lays down of the all time great reasonable speeches.  Most dudes can absolutely relate.

I’m not entirely sure that Ben had to kiss Banky, but I guess it fits the narrative.  Haha, this whole thing is cringe-worthy because, in your mind, you are practically begging him to stop, but it ain’t happening.   He is beyond clueless in proposing a threesome.  Especially with another dude.  He has that “mindless dude” look going for him where he is so deep in the forest that he can’t see the trees.  “But I’m not your fucking whore.”  Duh.

Yeah, wow, that ending brought me back to 97-97 era, I can’t recall when I exactly saw it, but that is the time frame.  I was in my senior year.  This movie was kinda influential to me, and I guess I had long blacked that out.  I just remember feeling like I didn’t ever want to go through any of that bullshit, like it would be better to not even bother.  Better to be slightly miserable with being single than to go through all of that trouble and heartache.  Like to get attached to something, but in the end, know that you’re going to mess it up because you know in your mind that you’re probably going to fuck it up and feel 10 times worse.  Needless to say, I was single for a very, very long time in life.  It’s easy enough to say that you may as well go for it, because you can’t succeed if you don’t try, but sometimes you need to just sit back and collect your head before you go at it again.

End Film

Overall, I still don’t like Ben.  He played his role good here, so there’s credit for that, but I disliked his character, even though I sided with him at various points.  Kevin Smith is great at what he does, or at least he used to be.  SOme of his newer stuff has not appealed to me.  There was a point in time when I held him in the same regard as Tarantino. About 2 decades ago, haha.  Tarantino has gone on to truly flourish and make movies that suit my tastes much more, so obviously, I favor him.  Joey Lauren Adams was great in this, as was Jason Lee, who never gets the recognition that he probably deserves.  I think I avoid this film, not because it isn’t good to great, but rather the emptiness that it leaves with you in the end.  This is why I am a horror fan.  I give this film a 7.4, as it still holds up incredibly well.  There’s a lot of things to like, and a lot of humor.

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