Netflix and Chill — 420 Edition: “Clerks”

by Anya Jaremko-Greenwold

“Clerks” is a low-budget, black-and-white cult comedy from 1994 directed by Kevin Smith. This one is perfect to watch when you’re stoned because it’s pretty intellectually low-maintenance and doesn’t require a lot of effort on your brain’s part.

The film is practically plotless; it consists of two convenience store employees hanging out, half-heartedly waiting on customers and talking about stupid stuff. Dante works at Quick Stop, and his best friend Randal works in the video store next door. To pass the time, they engage in a series of verbal sparring matches surrounding subjects most of us would only take this seriously if we were high; for example, they debate whether or not the contractors working on the second Death Star when it was destroyed at the end of “Return of the Jedi” were innocent victims. They do manage to insert some wisdom (or at the very least, some clever film critique) into their lazy banter about “Star Wars”; “Empire” had the better ending,” Dante argues. “I mean, Luke gets his hand cut off, finds out Vader’s his father, Han gets frozen and taken away by Boba Fett. It ends on such a down note. I mean, that’s what life is, a series of down endings. All “Jedi” had was a bunch of Muppets.”

The movie’s sometimes-witty, deadpan dialogue truthfully conveys the restlessness and dissatisfaction of relatively intelligent twentysomethings who can’t quite figure out how to get their lives going. They feel superior to their customers and their jobs – but as Randal points out, “if we’re so [bleeping] advanced, what are we doing working here?”

Bonus: the classic slacker pair Jay and Silent Bob make their very first appearance in this film – playing pot dealers.

Anya Jaremko-GreenwoldDGO Staff Writer


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