Snoochie Boochies: Our Review of ‘Madness In The Method’

Posted in Movies, VOD/iTunes/DigitalDownload by - August 15, 2019
Snoochie Boochies: Our Review of ‘Madness In The Method’

Madness in the Method is the directorial debut of Silent Bob’s hetero-life-mate Jason “Jay” Mewes. While primarily a comedy, the film also provides a meta (albeit somewhat fictionalized) look at Mewes’ career, wherein he’s predominantly played Jay, or Jay-like characters, namely stoner sidekicks. In the movie Mewes is attempting to break out of his type-casting, in an effort to be taken seriously as an actor and land more legitimate roles. After receiving a hallowed (and potentially magical) instructional book about method acting, Mewes dives in and slowly begins to descend into madness.

I’ve always liked Jason Mewes, and I loved the premise of the movie. Couple that with the fact that it’s his first time directing a feature, I must say that while I was wary of it, I was looking forward to the film.

Madness in the Method is not a great movie, and the fact that it is Mewes’ directorial debut is rather evident (more on that later), but I did find quite a lot to like about the movie, despite its significant problems.

Comedies, like horror films, tend to get a lot of leeway from me, provided that they are effective – funny or scary respectively. Indeed, I found this movie to be pretty darn amusing. I laughed out loud a number of times and was smiling consistently throughout. Obviously don’t expect Oscar-calibre acting here, but I have to say that I was impressed by Mewes’ performance. Granted, he’s basically playing himself, but I thought he did a solid job carrying the film. Kevin Smith is always entertaining, and I found Gina Carano charming as Jay’s girlfriend Carrie. Danny Trejo plays very much against type which was very funny, but for me the standout performance David Dastmalchian, credited as “The Witness”. He has only two scenes, but he steals them both.

The story does meander at times, but it’s a fun premise, and I liked that it went in a very different direction than I was expecting, particularly the ending. Further, for as bombastic and over the top ridiculous as it is, the movie does actually have quite a bit of heart. Mewes is very honest about his history with substance abuse. He and Smith share a very powerful scene where all of that buried frustration comes to a head. It’s played rather seriously and is a highlight sequence in the film.

I had no doubt that the movie would be rather meta and would have a wealth of View Askewniverse references. As an unabashed fan of that universe, I was completely open to this idea, but it did feel like they leaned a little heavily on all of that. There were so many “snoochie boochies” and “I’m not even supposed to be here today”s, that while funny at first, the gags began getting old, and it really did feel like they were being used as a crutch. Though I did like the story itself, the storytelling was a little sloppy. The movie came across more like a series of vignettes loosely based around the same theme than it did as a cohesive narrative. Further, the editing was erratic, which is where the first time director issue really becomes noticeable. The cutting between scenes often felt jarring. We’re in a scene, and then it just stops, cutting to black, and then we’re in a new scene. The movie doesn’t flow particularly well, and never finds a suitable cadence.

Peppered throughout the film are a handful of bizarre, surreal montage-like dream sequences that feel completely out of place. They don’t add anything as far as story or character development and they aren’t funny. They could easily have been cut as they feel self-indulgent and just slow the movie down.

Madness in the Method isn’t a great movie by any means. It lacks in everything you might imagine it would, but it also delivers what you’d expect. It’s fun, it’s pretty funny, and if you’re a fan of the works of Kevin Smith and the View Askewniverse, the movie feels like you’re hanging out with your old buddies. There’s nothing wrong with that.

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