I’ve mentioned that I’m a fan of Kevin Smith before. I like his movies, but I also really like his podcasts, which has actually influenced my enjoyment of his films. After listening to his podcast I started watching some of them for the first time or re-watching them and I became a fan. Anyway, anyone who listens to his podcasts or knows something about him is probably aware that he attributes Richard Linklater’s film Slacker as the inspiration for him to make Clerks. I’m a fan of Dazed and Confused (I love that movie), but had never seen Slacker and always wanted to watch it because of what Smith said. Well, I finally got around to it.
Slacker is different. It is very much an indie flick so that is a strike against it for some people, though it shouldn’t be. I hesitate to say this, but I’m still going to. It’s kinda like Clerks. It’s not as dirty or really as funny, depending on your sense of humor. What I mean is that they are both sort of movies about nothing. At least that’s how I see them. Clerks a much more stationary film (in many ways), while Slacker just kind of drifts…
The movie has no central characters. You just follow random people around Austin fora day. You start out with a guy in a taxi cab (Linklater himself) and he encounters someone else and both parties part ways with the camera following the new guy. Every now and then when a new person enters the frame, even if it is in the background, the camera will start following them. It could easily be just some bloke with a camera filming random people and be some odd documentary. There is more to the film than that though and the stories you see are interesting, if a bit bizarre at times.
I enjoyed it, but I don’t know about repeatability of watching it. I feel like I’d enjoy it every time mostly because I would catch something new. It’s also a movie you could re-watch as in the background.
Still, it isn’t for everyone. A lot of people would get bored by it, which is fine. Still it is an intriguing film to watch at least once.