How To Make Clerks 3 Not Suck

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

Last week, writer/director Kevin Smith posted on Facebook that he had begun writing what he claims will be his magnum opus, Clerks 3. The director came to fame with the original Clerks, which will soon have its 20th anniversary (don't you feel old?).

In what will perhaps be a statement that he will ultimately regret, Smith decried that this Clerks movie will be the "best film" he will ever make. Wow, thems fighting words.

The original Clerks, which was made on a dime - the movie cost allegedly $27,000 - touched on a societal sentiment of slacker '90s nothingness and quickly became a cult classic. Clerks follows a disastrous day in the life of a convenience store clerk who is forced into work on his day off. What made the film so successful was its fresh style, raunchy humor and Aaron Sorkin-meets-those guys you used to hang out with in high school- style of dialogue.

Smith went on to make several other films that spoke to his generation, such as Mall Rats and Chasing Amy. But he also made a few stinkers, in terms of critical success. Despite his avid following, Smith needs to have a comeback film.

The second Clerks movie was released in 2006 with a much glossier look and slightly bigger budget; it cost Smith $5 million to make Clerks II. Clerks II received mixed reviews and this movie fan absolutely hated it, like to the point of wanting to burn it and anyone who said that they enjoyed it.

When Smith leaked the writing of Clerks III had begun, I had mixed emotions. I want to be excited about this movie except I am worried that it's going to suck. I think that there are ways to make Clerks III as phenomenal as the first movie, if Smith thinks really hard about the flaws of the second movie and does not make the same mistakes.

5. Cut Your Own Budget One of the reasons the first Clerks is so good is because it didn't rely on anything but the script and the actors. The plot is basic, two guys shooting the shit about life and pop culture. The scenes in the second movie that were the best and most memorable were of the same caliber. Smith didn't need all the hoopla he put into the second instillation; what's funny is these two angry nerds being angry and nerdy.

4. Kill Off Rosario Dawson Dawson did absolutely nothing for the second movie save give it a big name actress that it didn't need. She seemed completely out of place among the other characters and her being the manager of a fast food restaurant is absurd. If she is absolutely necessary to the script, for God's sake make her wear a bra.

3. Choreographed Dance Scenes Are Embarrassing

For some unknown reason Smith thought it would be funny (?) or cute (??) to throw in a choreographed dance montage to The Jackson Five. This was his downfall. Choreographed dance scenes are never funny or cute; they are the jumping the shark of movies. I'm not talking

Silver Linings Playbook


Dirty Dancing

; obviously these dance scenes are necessary to the plot and lovely to watch. I'm talking about nonsensical moments in movies where everyone seems to be tapping their toes to the same song even though they can't actually hear it. And P.S. Rosario Dawson seriously needs to wear a bra if she's going to be doing any dancing.

2. Don't Make Cheesy References To The Previous Movies Smith is real inside jokey with his films and if you've seen enough of them, you are in on the joke. I have no problem with this and many of these jokes are his strongest. This is very different from Smith taking his preverbal finger and annoyingly flicking you in the eyeball while saying, "Get it? The first Clerks movie was in black and white so we're going to end this color movie in black and white too. Get it, get it?" Yes, we get it. It's lame. Just make the whole movie in black and white and shut up about it.

1. Great Idea I Just Had, Make the Whole Movie in Black and White If Smith wants to return to form why not return to the devoid of color? One of the most endearing things about the original Clerks is its shitty production, and the black and white aspect highlights how DIY it was. No one makes black and white movies anymore and there is a certain charm to them that Clerks captured. Plus, this will help Smith rein in the spending (see number 1).

If you haven't seen the first Clerks ever or in a long time you are in luck. It is playing Clerks this Thursday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m. and admission is only a buck. Visit studiomoviegrill.com

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.