Home > Movies, My Movie Reviews > Kevin Smith’s “Zack And Miri” Goes For Naughty & Nice But Just Comes Up Short…On The Nice

Kevin Smith’s “Zack And Miri” Goes For Naughty & Nice But Just Comes Up Short…On The Nice


Kevin Smith has had an interesting film career to date. He struck gold with “Clerks” and really surprised the film world with “Chasing Amy”. He has a cult following and continues to make the movies that he wants to make, even though he hasn’t really had a massive hit that would give him artistic license to do so. To be honest, Smith’s biggest success was being an Executive Producer on “Good Will Hunting”.

“Zack And Miri Make A Porno” takes Smith out of New Jersey and way out of the “Jersey Girl” (which I don’t mind so much) PG-13 world. “Zack And Miri” tries to mix the naughty and the nice in true Apatowian fashion. The naughty is quite funny, thanks to Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks, but the nice is pretty damn boring and predictable. Thankfully, this is much better than the awful and embarrassing “Clerks 2”.

The title of this movie has seen much debate and pretty much gives the entire plot away. Zack (Rogen) and Miri (Banks) are best friends that share a beaten, run-down apartment together in Monroeville, PA, a suburb of Pittsburgh. Zack works a dead-end job as a barista at a local coffee joint and Miri, well, we don’t really know what she does. We also get to meet Zack’s co-worker, Delaney, deliciously played by screen-stealer Craig Robinson. While there are several funny scenes in this movie, Robinson’s quips and one-liners steal the show and make the movie worth seeing. After “Pineapple Express” and his continued work on “The Office”, it’s been quite a good year for Robinson.

Zack and Miri attend their ten year high school reunion, where Miri hopes to hook up with Bobby Long (Brandon Routh, aka Superman). After completely embarrassing herself, we learn that Bobby is gay and has brought his boyfriend, Brandon (Justin Long), as his date. Zack also learns that Brandon is a gay porn film star. This leads to many easy jokes at the expense of the gay porn industry…which are a complete riot nonetheless. Long makes the most of his short time on-screen and the Apple Guy delivers his best screen performance to date.

By this time, Zack and Miri’s water and electricity have been shut off and this financial desperation leads to the act from the title of the movie. Zack and Miri bring Delaney on as a producer and begin to cast roles for their porno. The cast consists of the always “ready” Lester (Jason Mewes), Bubbles (the famous Traci Lords), Stacey (an unbelievably annoying Katie Morgan), Barry (Ricky Mabe), camera operator Deacon (Jeff Anderson), and, of course, Zack and Miri.

The original plot of their porno is a “Star Wars” parody (which feels a bit dated), complete with dirty names of the characters. However, Sex Machine from “From Dusk Til Dawn” scams Zack out of a storage space and, out of necessity, the crew starts filming their movie at Zack’s coffee store in the middle of the night. Kevin Smith outdoes the donkey show scene in “Clerks 2” with an even more disgusting moment involving human waste that could gag even the strongest of stomachs. The scene is pretty nasty and it took me a bit to recover from it.

Eventually, Zack and Miri have sex on camera and (shocker!) it changes their relationship. Then, we are dragged through a series of semi-dramatic moments: Zack doesn’t want Miri to have sex with anyone else on camera. Miri gets jealous of Stacey, Zack’s co-star. They argue. They cry. While it’s not completely awful, it’s just so painfully obvious where the movie is going that it become anti-climatic.

While I enjoyed “Zack And Miri” and laughed out loud many times, the romance angle just wasn’t as sharp as it could have been. The conclusion was just far too obvious. It’s also odd that a movie that has the two main character names in the title doesn’t make those characters the most interesting in the movie. Robinson’s Delaney and Mewes’ Lester are much funnier and more interesting than the stars. If not for Rogen and Banks being naturally fun to watch, this movie could have fared much worse. However, it is Smith’s best movie since “Dogma” and is one of the funnier movies released in 2008.

Cinematically Correct note: This movie was initially rated NC-17. There isn’t anything in this movie that isn’t in other comedies released over the past year…including full-frontal male nudity.

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  1. November 5, 2008 at 3:34 PM

    Shrugs, I’ll see it someday, maybe on DVD or something.

  2. November 12, 2008 at 9:08 AM

    can wait, but when this come to croatia, i will be a old man ..

  3. June 24, 2009 at 2:03 AM

    I was funny to me, just have to know what to expect from it.

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