Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Jason Lee Proves Himself in Chasing Amy

In 1997, Kevin Smith cast Jason Lee as comic book creator Banky Edwards in Chasing Amy. While the story is about the relationship between Holden McNeil (Ben Affleck) and Alyssa Jones (Joey Lauren Adams), Banky figures in what could be called a weird love triangle.

Banky has a lot in common with Lee's Mallrats character, Brodie Bruce; both are argumentative and obnoxious. But Banky is both nastier and more vulnerable.

Banky's crankiness is evident from the very first scene in Chasing Amy, in which he's accused of being a mere "tracer" for the comic book he draws and writes with Holden (be forewarned, there's a lot of swearing):

One of the things I love about Jason Lee is his ability to make you like a character who, by all rights, should not be likable. Banky is one of those characters.

I think you'll also like this seen (also featuring way too much of the "f" word) featuring Dwight Ewell, who's a lot of fun as Hooper X, a gay black comic book artist who needs to put on a macho black pride persona to sell his comic books.

Chasing Amy is an original and thoughtful, albeit infuriating movie. I wanted to bang Holden and Banky's heads together as I watched them mess things up. But it's definitely worth a watch.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Drawing Flies

Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier financed a little-known movie called Drawing Flies in 1996. Smith cast his usual gang. Jason Lee stars as Donner, a guy who convinces his friends to venture into the Canadian wildnerness to his uncle's cabin. Unfortunately for them, he's crazy and there is no cabin.

I haven't seen the movie, but I hope to get hold of a used copy one of these days. From what I've read about it, it's a low-budget, uneven film that's best left to fans of Kevin Smith and the cast (well, that is us, after all).

It's hard to find clips of this movie, but here's what Wikipedia has to say about it:

Drawing Flies


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Mallrats - Jason Lee's First Big Acting Gig

You can't make a lifelong career out of pro skateboarding and Jason wanted to leave the sport while at the top of his game. So, after appearing in Video Days and the Sonic Youth video, he decided a good career to fall back on would be movie acting. Yeah, he himself admits that was pretty naive.

Yet by 1995 he landed the part of Brodie Bruce, one of the two leads in Kevin Smith's movie Mallrats.

Here's a scene that clearly shows why Rene (Shannen Doherty) could, and should, find a better boyfriend than Brodie:

And a very fun video featuring Jay & Silent Bob dancing to the song "Build Me Up, Buttercup":

There are scenes from the movie in this, but they don't start until well over a minute into the video.

I didn't love the movie, but I do think Jason Lee is awesome in it.



Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sonic Youth 100% Video with Jason Lee

Jason Lee plays one of the skateboarders in this Sonic Youth video:

Jason Lee was one of the skateboarders in the video (not surprisingly). He's adorable in this, except at the end, as a guy who is dead. There's some nice skateboarding in this video, which was directed by Spike Jonze. I believe it was made in 1992.

Video Days (a skateboarding video)

In 1991, pro skateboarder Mark Gonzales recruited four more pro skateboarders, including Jason Lee, to film a move called Video Days, directed by Spike Jonze. This was through Gonzales's skateboarding company, Blind Skateboards.

This video shows Lee's part in the video. He's about 21 years old here. And just like in the last video I posted, he's got something goofy to say.

UPDATE: YouTube took the sound out of this video due to some copyright infringement. This seems unfair, as the band that made the song isn't even well known. I'm all for respecting copyright laws, but I don't get how this benefits anyone. If you search diligently, you may be able to find intact clips of Video Days online. Chances are, people will post them, they will get taken down, then people will post more, etc.

If you want a little more background on the video, here's the Wikipedia page:

Video Days Wikipedia Page

By the way, if you like the first song, it's called "The Knife Song" and it's by a band called Milk. I don't know if they're still around.


P.S. Watch out for the third video, Lee's part in the Sonic Youth video 100%.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Jason Lee Skateboarding as a Teen

I've decided to post a bunch of Jason Lee videos so you can trace his career from teen skateboarder to his first big movie role in Mallrats and on to his new TV career on My Name is Earl.

I think he's a pretty fascinating guy and a very interesting actor. Okay, I think he's cute too, but that's secondary (so I tell myself).

So here is the oldest Jason Lee video I know of. Need I tell you it's a skateboarding vid? He's a teenager here, still amateur.

Over time, I'll post more Jason Lee videos, in order from oldest to newest.