Kevin Smith’s debut, Clerks introduced audiences to the View Askew universe and the loveable characters of Dante, Randall and of course, Smith’s very own C3PO and R2-D2, Jay and Silent Bob.

When I first saw Clerks, I must have been only been 20 years old.

At the time I was working at the local supermarket and one of the first things in the film that I identified with was the fact that the main characters had a complete and utter dislike of not just their job but also their customers.

It showed that customer service was not a duty, it was a chore and a demeaning one at that.

As a young and impressionable shop worker, the tag line for the movie “just because they serve you, doesn’t mean they like you” summed up how I felt about my job and was pretty much the most memorable tag line I had heard since the seminal “In space no one can hear you scream” for Alien.

Here was a movie written and directed by somebody who knew the mind numbing pain and soul crushing experience of operating a checkout til lon a daily basis and hearing Randal utter the line “this job would be great if it wasn’t for the customers” certainly struck a chord.

Of course the film is not just about Dante and Randal’s hatred of the retail industry.

The backbone of the story is the love triangle between Dante, Veronica and Caitlin and how all this affects Dante’s friendship with the unpredictable and blunt Randal.

During the proceedings there are fights, hockey matches, a funeral and an incident involving necrophilia. It’s as crude as humour can get and clearly not for the easily offended.

Demonstrating Smith’s writing abilities, the script features plenty of quotable lines including a political dissection of Return of the Jedi and references to Spielberg’s Jaws. All these geeky nods helped me relate to the characters even more and it also set a trend for future Kevin Smith films.

Watching Clerks now, it still has a special place in my heart and it still makes me snigger in all the right places.

Clerks was clearly made by someone who had a passion for what they were doing and that youthful and raw quality resonates through out the film.  It’s ballsy, rough around the edges and isn’t afraid to pull punches (check out the original ending if you disagree with that statement).

Unlike the other movies that I was enjoying around that time, this one I identified with and for that reason I would argue that is still Kevin Smith’s best film.

About The Author

Colin lives in south west London. Looks like a hobbit and has been watching films ever since he saw Return of the Jedi at the age of 3. You can follow Colin on Twitter @obicolkenobi.