Jersey Girl

Posted: January 26, 2014 in Movies, Op-ed, Reviews
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Well friends, there are only a few films left in our month of honoring Mr. Kevin Smith. I can speak for both of us when I say that we have really enjoyed revisiting some of our favorite films by one of our favorite directors. Tonights entry is Smith’s first time stepping outside the Askewniverse to tell a story and what we get is a beautiful, deep, personal and hilarious film. I will admit, I was a little late to the game with this film due to my own stubbornness but it quickly became one of, if not my favorite Smith film.

Jersey Girl tells the story of Ollie Trinke(Ben Affleck), a very successful music industry publicist, who falls in love with Gertrude (Jennifer Lopez). After a courtship, marriage, and finding out that they are having a baby, they find themselves in the hospital having the baby. Things go wrong and Gertrude doesnt make it through childbirth. Ollie has a hard time adjusting and dealing with the whole being a single parent deal. After a blow up during a press conference for a high profile client, Ollie loses his job and gets a job working with his father (George Carlin in a spectacular acting role) as a city maintenance man. Flash forward seven years and Ollie has become a great father but things get complicated as he trys to break back into his former profession and meets a girl that he is interested in (Liv Tyler).

Long story short I love this film. Smith’s filmmaking had begun to take a more heartfelt, sentimental and personal turn several years earlier with Chasing Amy. While Amy dealt with Smith’s trouble dealing with a girlfriend’s past and Dogma dealt with his crisis of faith, Jersey Girl explored his experience with becoming a parent. Since I myself have become a parent, I have learned to appreciate this film even more as it voices thoughts and feelings that every parent has.

Ben Affleck is one of my favorite actors and his performance in this film is part of what earned him a spot on my list. The late great George Carlin also gives one of the finest performances of his very good acting career. Smith really upped the ante and set a higher standard of quality for himself with this picture and has matched or exceeded with every one since. For a great time that will touch your heart and give you some good laughs, give Jersey girl a watch. Til next time…

-Heath

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