Clerks II is the sequel to Kevin Smith's 1994 movie Clerks, and his sixth feature film to be set in the View Askewniverse. The film was released on July 21, 2006; it screened out of competition at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival and won the Audience Award at the 2006 Edinburgh International Film Festival.
The film opened in 2,150 theaters on July 21, 2006 and grossed $10,061,132 domestically in its first weekend. The film's theatrical gross was $24,148,068 domestically, plus an additional $2,833,903 foreign, turning a profit on its reported budget of $5,000,000. It received generally positive reviews from critics and View Askewniverse's cult fan base has been fairly positive about the film.
Plot[edit | edit source]
Randal Graves accidentally leaves the coffee pot warmer on overnight, burning down the Quick Stop convenience store where he and Dante Hicks have worked for over a decade. Approximately one year later, they are working at a Mooby's fast food restaurant. Dante is planning to leave his minimum wage lifestyle in favor of a family life in Florida with his domineering fiancée Emma Bunting (Jennifer Schwalbach Smith), whose father will even provide them with a house to live in and a commercial car wash to run. Jay and Silent Bob are now drug-free (to reflect Jason Mewes' new-found sobriety after having been busted and put on probation, which means that they must now undergo drug testing. However, they still deal cannabis and are otherwise still up to their usual antics, following Dante and Randal from the Quick Stop to Mooby's. Dante is also close to their boss, laid back free spirit Becky Scott (Rosario Dawson), with whom he had a one night stand on a food preparation table in the back of Mooby's several weeks prior to the start of the movie's events.
Thanks to some snide remarks from an old high school nemesis turned internet millionaire, Lance Dowds (Jason Lee), Randal (Jeff Anderson) realizes he is not as happy with his position in life as he had thought. Not only that, but he is scared, both at the prospect of never amounting to anything, and at the idea of losing Dante. He quietly shrugs off this mid-life crisis, but not without causing some trouble of his own in the store. 19-year-old Elias Grover (Trevor Fehrman), a The Lord of the Rings/Transformers geek and isolated Christian virgin, works at Mooby's with Dante and Randal, and is frequently subjected to Randal's brand of social abuse. Randal is shocked at how gullible Elias is when Elias explains to him that he has never slept with his girlfriend because a troll called "Pillowpants" dwells inside her vagina and will bite off his penis if they have sex before "the troll is peed out" when she turns 21.
After Dante confesses he is worried about dancing at his wedding, Becky takes Dante onto the roof to teach him some moves and asks Jay and Silent Bob to supply the music. They initially play "Welcome Home" by King Diamond before being scolded and replacing that with The Jackson 5. At this point an elaborately choreographed dance routine to the song is performed by dozens of extras. As the song, "ABC" plays, Dante realizes that he is in love with Becky, and at the end of the song, he admits this to her. Becky then reveals to Dante that she is pregnant with his child. She tells him that she will keep the baby, but will not ruin his upcoming marriage by telling Emma, leaving Dante free to pursue his own life in Florida. Anticipating Dante's move there, Randal throws Dante a going away party, which includes "Kinky Kelly and the Sexy Stud", an "interspecies erotica" performance (a donkey show), complete with a fog machine. Dante, having been sent away by Randal to maintain the surprise, arrives back at the restaurant, mistakes the fog for another fire, and calls the fire department. When he discovers that it is not a fire, he watches the show with Randal, Jay, Bob and an increasingly intoxicated and aroused Elias. They are soon horrified to find that Kinky Kelly is not a woman, but the featured donkey. The "Sexy Stud" turns out to be a leather clad, overweight man, whom Randal originally thought was the donkey's wrangler. Everyone is disgusted (but intrigued) at this show except Elias, who unzips his pants, whimpers "I'm sorry Jesus" and then masturbates openly while crying.
Becky arrives, and although she is initially shocked at the presence of the performance in her restaurant, she and Dante share a close moment, in which he tells her that he thinks she has feelings for him, and that he feels the same way about her. They kiss, only to be discovered by Emma, who arrives with a cake she baked for Dante. The situation escalates when Jay mistakenly congratulates Emma for her pregnancy; when Jay realizes what is going on, he encourages Emma to assault Dante (which she does) before asking her out. Emma leaves the restaurant in disgust.
The fire and police departments arrive at the restaurant, responding to the emergency phone call that Dante made but never canceled and are shocked at what they see. Dante, Randal, Elias, Jay, Silent Bob, and The Sexy Stud are taken to jail while the police decide if charges will be filed; the Sexy Stud calmly recites the New Jersey penal code, reassuring them all that there is no law against watching an act of bestiality, and that he is the only one who will face any recourse-- a small fine. An enraged Dante announces the end of his and Randal's friendship, leaving Randal hurt and devastated. Randal confesses his fear of losing his best friend, and suggests that the duo buy the Quick Stop and RST Video store for themselves. Jay and Silent Bob agree to lend them the money (a deleted scene reveals that the pair received thousands of dollars in royalties after the events of Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back), on the condition that they be allowed to loiter in front of the Quick Stop as they did years ago. Jay tacks on a second condition-- that Randall and Dante must blow each other, then they have to go ass to mouth-- that Silent Bob quickly nixes. Dante and Randall take the money from Jay and Silent Bob and buy the Quick Stop and RST Video. Dante proposes to Becky, who accepts, and helps Dante and Randall repair and remodel the stores.
Dante and Randal repair the Quick Stop. Elias applies for Randall's old job at RST Video. Randal is hesitant to hire him, but Dante eventually convinces him to give Elias the position. Then, while a visibly pregnant Becky and Elias look on, Dante and Randal reveal an "I assure you, we're re-open!" sign (a reference to the original Clerks) on the front of the Quick Stop. Jay and Silent Bob, the latter playing the song Goodbye Horses yet again as Jay puts on his chapstick and assumingly does his whole dance all over again (a spoof of Buffalo Bill's dance in The Silence of the Lambs). Finally, Dante and Randal are behind the Quick Stop counter. Randal says to Dante "You're not even supposed to be here today" in a nod to the first film, to which Dante replies "Can you feel it? Today is the first day of the rest of our lives". The movie ends with a reverse zoom of Dante and Randal, passing the Milk Maid (Smith's mother) from the first film, as the scene fades from color to the black and white of the original film. The song Misery by Soul Asylum starts to play, and Dante and Randal look out with affection on the Quick Shop before returning to work, bringing the The View Askewniverse full circle.