Kevin Smith Collection Blu-ray Review

The Kevin Smith Collection has made it on to Blu-ray disc and comes with the trio of Clerks, Chasing Amy, and Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back. This review is a review based on all three movies combined in this box set, but please do check out each individual movie’s review via our reviews link. In which case, parts of this review contains material from those reviews to make a collaborative effort.

By now who doesn’t know who Kevin Smith is? Then you must know that he was also the creator of one of the most remembered Indie film in the past 10 years. Clerks has become one of the most loved films by Smith’s fans, this is the one that started it all. Clerks did not achieve its status by viral marketing, but none other than word of mouth. Those willing to pay their hard earned cash on a film that no one had heard of and hardly any theater showed, found themselves with a surprise. Clerks created fuzz not only among its fans, but with critics. How did he do it? Kevin Smith’s writing, directing and passion for filming is all evident in the movie.

Convenience store clerk Dante (Brian O’Halloran) and video store clerk Randal (Jeff Anderson) begin the day having to cover in for other employees on their days off. They are stuck in their dead end jobs with no end in sight. Their seemingly normal day turns sour very fast having to deal with ungrateful customers, odd personalities that walk into the store, and not to mention trying to keep the local drug dealers Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Kevin Smith) who hang outside of their doors. Dante spends his time complaining about his life and all the romantic conflicts and what could have been while Randal remains the same loud mouth who knows his limitations and openly speaks his obnoxious mind.

Kevin Smith’s next rodeo came in the likes of Chasing Amy. Chasing Amy was shot in a grueling 22 days and with a tight budget and a totally unique script.

Holden (Ben Affleck) and Banky (Jason Lee) are 30ish buds-since-High-School who have grown into the guy fantasy job of writing a hit comic book. They get to alternate working on “Bluntman and Chronic” with making personal appearances at fan conventions where they get paid to sign autographs.

At one of these conventions they hook up with another “graphic novelist”, Dwight Ewell’s Hooper X – who is constantly educating Holden and Banky about being black and being gay. Ewell steals all of his scenes because Hooper is a perfect mix of bravado and angst which sufficiently masks his inner conflict for being black and gay.

Hooper introduces our heroes to Alyssa Jones, portrayed in a career-making performance by Joey Lauren Adams. Alyssa is cute, funny, and talented so Holden falls for her in a big way. The catch comes with that Alyssa is a lesbian. Like Smith’s first feature Clerks the central conflict in “Chasing Amy” concerns one character’s difficulties accepting the “history” of the other romantic interest.

And last but not least in the box set comes one of Smith’s more notable films due to its characters and himself. Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back.

The film begins when Jay and Silent Bob (Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith) find out that a comic based on them, Bluntman and Chronic, is being adopted into the big screen by Miramax. Jay and silent Bob take on the journey to Hollywood in order to get a piece of the earnings. Once they arrive they find out that the person they are searching for no longer holds the rights, but has sold them to someone close to them. Jay and silent Bob find themselves in a whole lot of trouble in their quest to get their share of the money or stop the film from being made.

Clerks arrives on Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG4-AVC encode framed at 1.85:1. This is the best looking Clerks to date, it will probably never look any better than this. The film is present in black and white throughout with white colors that are crisp and clear, greys that are nicely preserved, blacks that deep and very accurately presented. There are many visible video noise, but not enough to be considered a distraction. There also some grain detected as well as some softness in several scenes. This was originally a very low budget film so anyone having high expectations will be left disappointed.

Chasing Amy is brought to Blu-ray with a VC-1 1080p encode at 1.85:1. Although it’s the best transfer to date I must admit the PQ isn’t to die for. Will the PQ alone entice you to upgrade from your DVD version? Probably not, but if you’re a fan of the film then it’s the extra supplements that make you do just that, plus knowing it’s still the best transfer and audio track this film has seen to date. This wasn’t shot on the greatest film so that can be a big factor as if I’m correct it was shot on 16mm? None the less, there are bits of unintentional grain and cruddy quality moments in dark scenes since the film lacks of deep blacks. It’s really not as bad as I make it sound but you can definitely see the age in this film via its Blu-ray transfer. It is in no way reference quality and in fact would give any Blu-ray haters fuel to their fire of negatives if you showed this one off in your system at a viewing.

Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back arrives on Blu-ray with an uncompressed PCM 5.1 high definition audio track. The dialogue is clear, clean, and crisp without any problems. In fact the attention to details is impressive. The music is very engaging and surround the viewer in a nice soundfield. The bass is deep when required to do so. All in all this track delivers a very pleasing sound experience, the dialog is clean, the music sound great, and captures the charm of the film with ease.

Clerks arrives on Blu-ray with a 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. Again the viewer should take into consideration the original source material and the problems it originally contained within. The audio track creates a seemingly immersive soundfield, yes I am aware that there is very little substance in the film to feel immerse, however, for what it is it works. The rears appear to kick in nicely during the few scenes with music on them. There are a few problems that should have been taken care of; the dialogue has problems all around from clearness to clarity. The film appears to create some distortion to the center channel which can become quite annoying. This is probably due to the original material.

Chasing Amy comes with a DTS-HD Master 5.1 audio track. Although the audio clarity of dialouge can be heard greatly the track just doesn’t seem to impress. Sure its the greatest audio track for Chasing Amy to ever grace a media release but with a lot of scenes that had the moments to impress it lacked. The singing scene with Alissa is one for prime example. On the good side, the scene with Holden and Alissa out yelling in the rain was the best this release has ever gotten. The yelling seemd to come nice and strong through my fronts. Over all, the audio track isn’t to bad compared to other Blu-ray releases but for a DTS-HD Master I expected a bit more compared to the likes. Once again, still the best audio this release has ever gotten. Kudos.

And last but not least …

Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back arrives on Blu-ray with an uncompressed PCM 5.1 high definition audio track. The dialogue is clear, clean, and crisp without any problems. In fact the attention to details is impressive. The music is very engaging and surround the viewer in a nice soundfield. The bass is deep when required to do so. All in all this track delivers a very pleasing sound experience, the dialog is clean, the music sound great, and captures the charm of the film with ease.

The Kevin Smith Collection is loaded with lots of extras and even exclusive content to the Blu-ray disc box set. Such exclusive content like the list below.

Chasing Amy:
Audio Commentary: Writer/director Kevin Smith and producer Scott Mosier provide an all new audio commentary track.

Was It Something I Said? (HD, 18 minutes): The drama unfolds, a nice interview with Smith and Joey Lauren Adams about their relationship and the falling out the two had.

Tracing Amy (HD, 82 minutes): Another new exclusive comes our way in a total overview of the production. The challenges of creating the film on a mere 200k budget and the appeal this film has garnered over the years. Smith comes direct at you in his straight forward approach and his eccentric ways. Great piece.

The Making of Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back – Yes, you read that right and you might be wondering why this featurette is part of Clerks. Well, this is because Smith wanted new material on the disc. However, is just as entertaining as most of the featurettes included in this disc.

That is just a bit of the new exclusive content but both Chasing Amy & Clerks are loaded with extras from prior releases on leaving out a few peices. On the other hand, Jay & Silent Bob was a bit lackluster in the supplements department.

If your a Kevin Smith fan then you cant pass up this wonderful box set at this great value price. The movies in all have above average video quality and upgraded audio quality amongst many extras and some even blu-ray exclusive. Loads of audio commentary tracks and special featurettes make this worth wild for all Kevin Smith fans. Even for just regular fans of the movies in general your getting a great bang for your buck. This set in total comes recommended.

About the author

is a pop culture fanatic who loves to collect things from films that leave a lasting impression on him. A big fan of such brands like SteelBook, Mondo, and Sideshow. Favorite films or franchises include Braveheart, HEAT, Book of Eli, Ip Man, Nolan's Batman, Everything Marvel, and practically anything Quentin Tarantino touches. Proudly owns The Notebook, drives 88 mph, and know's exactly what was in Marsellus Wallace's briefcase!