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An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder (2006)

Video  -  Documentary | Comedy  -  28 November 2006 (USA)
7.8
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Reviews: 11 user | 5 critic

In this second Q&A with Kevin Smith he now enters the homes of some of his fans in Toronto and London.

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In this second Q&A with Kevin Smith he now enters the homes of some of his fans in Toronto and London.

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28 November 2006 (USA)  »

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Funny at times, but not as much as the first film
4 January 2007 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

When I first saw pieces of An Evening with Kevin Smith, I could not stop watching. It was just too funny for words, and just so engrossing that the obnoxiously long running time did not seem like too much of an issue. Of course, I never did manage to watch it start to finish, but all of the parts I watched made me want to. So at Christmas time, knowing full well that a follow-up disc had been released, I acquired both DVDs. But instead of watching and finishing off the first one, I sat down and watched all of the second film, An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder. And like many other people, I was pretty disappointed.

Whereas the original film was more of a compilation of "best of" clips from various college Q&A visits Smith had made all over the United States, the second film is two full visits he made abroad with no edits or cuts. The first disc encompasses a visit to Toronto, and the second to London. Smith entertains the audience with plenty of stories, and he answers many questions that just about any other film director would shy away from. Woody Allen this man is not.

I think the reason this film does not work on the same level as the first film is the fact that it is just two of his appearances as opposed to a handful. The first was a compilation of all sorts of clips, and this just goes straight through both "concerts" from beginning to end. For that reason, it just does not hold up the same way. There are many boring lulls throughout, and at many times, Smith just goes totally off topic and rambles about the stupidest things. There is a whole ten-minute bit during the London appearance where he talks with two audience members about pick-up lines, and it is just awkward because we know he is trying to crack jokes, but he just is not spot-on. If the first film taught us anything, it is that Smith is great in small doses, because when he is on, he really is on. But this film proves the fact that he cannot stay on for an entire two-hour span.

Instead, we are treated to interesting and intriguing stories few and far between. Yes, Smith talks throughout, but he just looks and sounds both lazy, and incredibly bored. Never is there a real sense that Smith desperately wants to be at either appearance. It just feels like he wants to answer a few questions, grab the cheque and take off. Very little of the conviction he had on the previous film, or even his interview and candid footage from his feature film DVDs is apparent on the stage here. He instead, has devotion for some of the material he talks about, and then quite literally, looks like he could care less at the more pointless stuff.

An audience member asks him early on to give him some pointers about writing a screenplay, and asks if he in fact, will take a read at it. He then goes into a lengthy speech about how lazy he is when he writes scripts, and how he really does not want to read the guy's script because of that same laziness. It both felt heartbreaking and incredibly selfish from a director who really works as a result of the fan appreciation, and really made me rethink how great a director Smith really is. Parts like these show up a few times, and makes Smith look more like a pompous jerk than the hilarious and fan driven guy he really is (or comes off as).

As for the stories themselves, as previously stated, they are interesting but few and far between. We are treated to stories about his wife's pictorial in Playboy, his newly found fatherhood and his fondness for Dora the Explorer. These three stand out in my mind as particularly funny stories, and unfortunately, there is a real lack of them on these two discs. The first film was practically overflowing with hilarious and memorable stories, and this one had me really scratching my head attempting to come up with some of the stories that he tells that were actually worthwhile.

It is great to see Jason Mewes make an appearance at both venues and talk for a bit, but even he cannot save Smith from the boredom that sets in not too long after each concert starts. You can tell he is stretching things out here and there, and as said before, it just does not have anywhere near as much strength as the first film. This film just cannot stand up on its own, and unfortunately, is a disappointment. It may be a worthwhile look for people who really like Smith, but for everyone else, just stick with the first film.

6/10.


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