Criterion Year Week 12: Chasing Amy

The Criterion Collection, the last vestige of truly collectible DVD and Blu-Ray movies in existence. These are well produced, fancy pants editions of important and interesting films for the discerning film lover.

We continue our journey through Jim's collection of movies with...

Week 12:

Chasing Amy

Spine Number: 75

Director: Kevin Smith

Genre: Comedy

The 90's were a revolutionary time for movies. Thanks to the success of films like Reservoir Dogs El Mariachi, Roger and Me, Clerks, and Slacker the world of cinema was no longer the exclusive property of the big studio gatekeepers. Yes, they still controlled the big picture, but, in large thanks to a growing college scene that rejected the big budget aesthetics in favor of more personal and intimate movies and music an independent film scene blossomed and came to influence every aspect of the American film landscape.

Suddenly, filmmakers and aspiring filmmakers were not the only ones familiar with low budget auteurs who made movies outside of the studio system. Names like Tarantino, Smith, Linklater, Rodriguez, and Soderberg were known by people outside of the small world of film fanatics. Not only that, but much like the stand up comedy boom of the late 80's, people began to realize that if you had a story to tell, you could tell it on film and actually have a shot at people seeing it.

Enter Kevin Smith. Possibly the most independent of the independents. His film "Clerks." blew people away. Here was this kid from Jersey who wanted to make movies that were about the day to day lives of people who, on the surface, were absolutely ordinary. These weren't the jocks or the super nerds, these were the people in the middle. He wanted to make movies that reflected the lives of people his age who were going to see them. Bored, underemployed, but by no means unintelligent, his characters were pop culture obsessives that said cool, funny shit, were open and honest about their personal and sexual lives, and who were trying to find their way in a world that had somehow become much bigger than the one they grew up in.

Clerks set the stage, Mallrats opened the universe, and Chasing Amy gave it a heart.

Chasing Amy is a very personal film that is perfectly reflective of the era that spawned it. Young people trying to navigate love while trying to figure out who they are as people.

Neither Jim nor Clarkson has seen this movie in 15 years. Both went in remembering it as Smith's masterwork. And both were nervous about how they would react to it at this stage in their lives.

So, listen and find out what 15 years of life does to how this movie plays out.


Next week:

Spine Number 52: Yojimbo (The spine number is out of sequence because I just got the Yojimbo/Sanjuro box set, so we are jumping back for the next two weeks)

Also, check this out.
Looks like Summer Movie League has officially become Fantasy Movie League.
It looks quite fun. Here's how it works.
You have an 8 screen theater.
Every week you pick movies and have a budget/salary cap you have to stay under.
Then you compete against other theaters in your league.
It's fantasy football for movie people.

Our league is Film Thugs 2015 and the password is Porterhouse.

And remember, you can be a part of the show any time you wild like. How's that? All you have to do is call or e-mail us. If you live in the US, or any place that makes calling the US easy, just dial 512-666-RANT and leave us a voicemail. We will read the Google Voice transcript and play your message. It's both funny AND informative.

If you live outside the US you can call us on Skype at The_Film_Thugs. You can leave a message, or someone might actually answer.

E-mail us at and we will read/play whatever you send us, or you can e-mail to be part of  an upcoming "Ask the Film Thugs" show, where we answer questions on any subject without having heard them first.

Also, we are on twitter @thefilmthugs and on Facebook and Vine.

You can also click on one of our sponsor links below and THEY will pay us. That's right. You won't have to pay a PENNY extra, and Amazon/Onnit/Teefury will give us a little taste.

Also, be sure to check back often for our new endeavor The Life Masters, where we answer questions to other advice columnists.

Thanks for listening, and until next week...

Jim out.

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