BLAST FROM THE PAST: Dogma

Cert: 15 Runtime: 130 mins Director: Kevin Smith  Starring:  Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Linda Fiorentino, Jason Mewes, Kevin Smith, Salma Hayek, Chris Rock and Alan Rickman

 I know they were just kids, but we kicked their fucken pube-less asses!

Kevin Smith is one of my favourite film makers of all time, after watching his new show Comic Book Men on AMC I have decided that my blast from the past this week is Dogma.Two fallen angels named Bartleby and Loki (Ben Affleck and Matt Damon) are banished from Heaven and exiled to Wisconsin for the rest of eternity. They notice a church in Red Bank, NJ is having it’s centennial anniversary with a plenary indulgence. If they pass through the doors of the church, their sins will be forgiven and sent back to Heaven. But it will overrule God and all existence has we know it will crumble. Meanwhile Metatron (Alan Rickman) acts as The Voice of God and tells Bethany Sloane (Linda Fiorentino), whom works at an abortion clinic to stop Bartleby and Loki from entering the church. She must find the two profits, who happen to be stoners Jay and Silent Bob (Jason Mewes and the director Kevin Smith) and the thirteenth apostle, Rufus (Chris Rock) who was left out of the Bible because he was black. They also find the Muse character Serendipity (Salma Hayek) whom has writer’s block. All the characters assist Bethany trying to stop Bartleby and Loki. Thats not all. The demon Azrael (Jason Lee) and three hockey playing thugs (The Stygian Triplets) are trying to stop Bethany and her friends. Its all a matter of sacrifice to stop two angels from ruining existence.

Kevin Smith not only has the stomach to make such a controversial movie, but he has the power and nerve to make it with a straight face. This movie gave him over 300,000 pieces of hate mail and at least two death threats. Without a doubt his most tender movie and his longest, Dogma is a masterpiece. Its religious satire based film touches on many terms in the Catholic religion and becomes a Fantasy Comedy. Not only is it his longest and most controversial, it’s definitely his most confusing. Not being Catholic, I didn’t know half the topics they touched so I had to do about an hour of research to finally make sense of this movie. Im not big on religion and feel it’s just a way to start and argument just like if you are Labour or Conservative. Who cares what you are? If I was with a friend and we finally touched base on our religion and that killed it because he was Jewish and I was Catholic, Id be pretty angry. Religion causes arguments. Arguments Im not in the mood for. Be whatever you want to be and be it with proud is what I say.Dogma is probably the most serious Kevin Smith film ever made. Its extremely well written and the dialogue (which Im obsessed with in every movie of his) is like real people talking in a real situation. It doesn’t even feel that they handed them a script. Its like they know the lines they are going to say by heart and the movie doesn’t even need a script. There’s no fear in any actors, they’re all natural and seem to know exactly what to say and not say it like they are eye candy for the camera. Which is the beauty of Kevin Smith movies. Movies with raw dialogue, extremely developed characters, and a brilliant, cutting edge story behind them. Which is what I love best.

Still remaining locked and not budging is my favorite movie and has been for the last five years, Clerks. Clerks was the first movie in Smith’s career and has probably the best dialogue in the history of film and some of the most well developed and the best characters you can relate your life too, I’ve ever seen. Not to say other KS movies aren’t equally impressive. His second movie Mallrats was panned by everyone, but I have always loved it for it’s humor and awarded it four stars, Chasing Amy being very well written and deserving of four as well, this too, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back was the first movie of KS I gave lower than four stars, but just a smudge being rated a three stars by me because at that point I deemed KS at becoming “too Hollywood”, than came Clerks II which I deemed “very well done and a worthy sequel” with a happily three and a half stars to go with it as well.One I didn’t mentioned, but reviewed was Vulgar, a dark Comedy mixed with elements of Suspense and revenge was produced by KS, but not directed. I consider it still a KS movie which I thought had great music and a very unique feeling.Dogma didn’t seem like my kind of movie, but it was still as beautiful as Clerks and Chasing Amy. Much more plot driven and dialogue heavy than Chasing Amy, Dogma took on a much more deeper story that you had to pay attention to each and every second or you would be lost. Cameo appearances by Clerks actors Brian O’Halloran and Jeff Anderson deem successful in my book as well as George Carlin’s appearance being hilarious and well worth it, I rate Dogma the third best movie in the KS series, first one being Clerks, second Chasing Amy, and fourth being Mallrats.

8.0/10

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