Kevin Smith returns to form with his new film Red State, out this week. Can it be that the critical pasting he received for his last movie Cop Out has provoked him into doing what he does best?

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Cop Out

Hear Mark Kermode review the week's new films every Friday from 2pm on BBC Radio 5 live. Kermode & Mayo's Film Review is also available as a free podcast to download and keep.

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  • Comment number 51. Posted by DJM

    on 7 Oct 2011 18:50

    I will start off by saying that while not a big fan of Kevin Smith, I do like most of his films (there is only really Cop Out that I found to be pretty poor; not an awful film but massively disappointing one).

    That said, on the whole Red State is as bad as Cop Out is and I have to agree with most of what Real de Madrid(42) wrote. It is a very average and ultimately disappointing movie from a director/writer who is capable of much better. It needed more focus on story and characters, and less poorly written, uninteresting and at times seemingly endless preachy dialogue.

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  • Comment number 50. Posted by close_6

    on 4 Oct 2011 11:57

    I have been a fan of Kevin's work from the beginning, Clerks was (at the time) a refreshing generation movie featuring superb writing and a very 90's soundtrack. I've liked pretty much most of Smiths movies within the Askewniverse, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, Zack & Miri and Clerks 2 hold a lot of pleasure for me and remind me of a time and sense of honesty that has unfortunately been lost I think since entering the 2000's. I even love his Q&A sessions and still find Smiths voice an entertaining (if not sometimes little self obsessed) one to listen to.

    Cop Out was unfortunately (although not written by Kevin Smith, so he can't be held solely responsible) a dire movie, and you can see on screen that it was obviously an awkward shoot, with Kevin Smith very vocal about his disappointment at working with Bruce Willis, having been a long time fan and ultimately realising he was a bit of a jerk, proof positive that you should never meet your idols.

    So we move on to Red State, a fantastic movie and one that shows a fresh approach to film making from Kevin whilst keeping his trademark humour and writing intact.
    Unfortunately just as Kevin Smith returns with something completely different to say we're told (by Kevin Smith himself) that this is his second to last movie before retiring from directing and focusing on his extremely successful Smodcast empire.

    Thank you Kevin, you've provided me with much entertainment over the years, 8 great out of 10 movies is quite an impressive track record as far as I'm concerned and with Red State you've done it again.

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  • Comment number 49. Posted by Matth Stil

    on 3 Oct 2011 21:42

    #47 - Formality or familiarity...? As the latter '...breeds contempt', it's always best to "...be careful (on) here".

    As for the rest of the comment: whatever!

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  • Comment number 48. Posted by Joel_Cooney

    on 2 Oct 2011 18:17

    I went to see Red State today and have mixed feelings about it. I'm not saying that it was necessarily a good or a bad film but at least it provoked some response. Not since Michael Hanneke's US remake of "Funny Games" have I seen a film that goes so out of its way to confound audience expectations.

    Certainly worth a look but be advised that you might go away feeling somewhat frustrated or short-changed, depending on your tolerance for this sort of thing.

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  • Comment number 47. Posted by Joel_Cooney

    on 2 Oct 2011 18:12

    @Matth Stil re: 31.

    I'd better be careful here - the last time I responded to one of your messages, the moderators handed me my backside on a plate. (On that note weekend mods, can you please assume good faith here?)

    To paraphrase a Computer Science aphorism, claiming that a film is good merely because of the size of it's box office is like saying ['a famous fast food chain with a Scottish surname'] make the best food in the world. The possibility of the success of a re-release of the prequels does not "negate the haters' argument once and for all" - it merely suggests that credulous fans are indeed, credulous.

    I'm not even going to bother posting the link to the Plinkett reviews again because if you are genuinely the Star Wars fan that you claim to be, you would already be aware of them. Either way, it should be quite clear that the prequel films were lazy, badly written, poorly executed cash-ins purely designed to part well meaning fans from their money and Lucas ought to be thoroughly ashamed of himself. On that note, If you do see George, could you ask him for my childhood back please?

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  • Comment number 46. Posted by moober87

    on 1 Oct 2011 11:51

    It's generally agreed that Cop Out is aweful and I say that as a big KS fan. Rather than the critics being out of touch that film made me, for just a moment, feel maybe with all his additional web work and podcasts that he was stuck in a loop and was in fact the one out of touch. Red State should prove this wrong. For being a KS fan I think it at times is comparable to being a Star Wars fan these days. Heckled for infinite re-releases and changes and the butt of the joke for their (my) extreme love and involvement with the films, its easy to forget that at the heart of it all is a bunch of films that people love and thats all that matters.
    The view-askew universe is over (for now...) and he is trying new things. We all learn from our mistakes. Kevin Smith changed the game with indie film and nearly 20 years later he's doing it again. Good luck to the guy. He has a lot of passion for film and makes the idea of film-making possible for the average joe

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  • Comment number 45. Posted by sean

    on 30 Sept 2011 15:59

    I love kevin smith, he is one of my favorate wrigter/directors I have liked most of his films the only two I dont like are Zack and Mari make a porno and Cop out . Cop Out was extreamly diserpointing, booring, dull, uninventive and yes you where right lazy. Zack and Miri was a reaction to Judd Appatows films, thats why most of the Judd Appatow cast are in it. Ive been looking forward to RedState since it was announced lets just hope that he has bounced back.

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  • Comment number 44. Posted by drewtonta

    on 30 Sept 2011 14:52

    I am SO glad to hear Smith is back on track. As a fan of his work, I was deeply disappointed with his last few movies (Clerks 2 and Cop-Out). Zack and Miri wasn't at all bad, I thought. Shame the DVD had no commentary. Never understood that.

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  • Comment number 43. Posted by Simon79

    on 30 Sept 2011 10:48

    I remember watching Cop Out on a plane, had it crashed it may had seemed liked a small mercy, it isn't just bad - its monumentally awful! I think it's important to remember that Cop Out isn't Smith's lone stinker, Clerks 2 and Jersey Girl anyone? What people liked about Kevin was his independent asthetic that made Clerks, Mallrats and Chasing Amy seem like a breath of fresh air. Directors are entitled to a 'bad day at the office' too, but even at his 'best', his films have always been whiney and obnoxious. Simply because he threw a paddy doesn't justify a reappresal of what is a mediocre body of work anyway.

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  • Comment number 42. Posted by Real de Madrid

    on 30 Sept 2011 08:16

    I mean, seriously??

    "Red State" is utter rubbish from start to finish. It starts as a teenage torture porn horror flick, then descends into a siege movie and ends up as a political thriller. It is a complete mess, the pacing is off and it is incredibly dull.
    Smith tries to make a political statement about religious extremists and post-9/11 government action but none of this is convincing. After spending a good 20 mins to show that a group of religious nutters really hates gay people (including seeing John Goodman babbling into his bluetooth headset while having breakfast for what seems like hours), the honey trap at the beginning of the movie (and which triggers the whole affair) is directed at a bunch of teenage boys looking for a sh*g with an older woman. Err, what?
    And I am not giving anything away when I say there is a shootout in the middle of the film (you can see that in Mark's clip) but I can indicate that it is probably the dullest (and longest!) shootout in cinematic history.

    I haven't seen "Cop Out" but if "Red State" is so much more "Kevin Smith" than "Cop Out", then surely "Cop Out" must be the better movie. With "Red State", Smith has shown his shortcomings as a director and, more strikingly, as a writer.

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