Jersey Girl

| April 1, 2004

In last year’s An Evening with Kevin Smith, the actor/director says that it is time to move on from the Jay and Silent Bob type movies and do something a little more serious.
With Jersey Girl, Smith shows it was very easy for him to tell a family friendly story with a minimum of fart and drug jokes. Interestingly enough, he was able to do it with a lot of his old friends in important or small roles.
Ben Affleck (Chasing Amy, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Mallrats) stars as Ollie Trinke, a music Public Relations wunderkind who meets and falls madly in love with and marries Gertie Steiney (Jennifer Lopez from Enough). They have a daughter but Steiney dies in childbirth, leaving Ollie as a single father. Trinke makes a self-imposed, unintentional career change and becomes super dad to his daughter, named Gertie after her mom.
Jersey Girl has a lot of truly funny moments and many touching moments as Trinke continually finds new and different hurtles to jump in bringing up his daughter including walking in on her first game of Doctor with a neighbor boy.
Great acting is abundant. Someone needs to pair up little Raquel Castro (TV’s 3rd Watch) with the equally talented Dakota Fanning in one of those little-kids-acting-like-grownups movie. Castro, like Fanning, is delightful to watch and her ability to keep up with the adults in this film makes her debut here a complete hit. I am sure that having veteran actor George Carlin (playing her grandfather) and Liv Tyler (That Thing You Do, One Night at McCool’s) as her dad’s new love interest helped but Castro is perfect. Cameos by Matt Damon, Will Smith, and Jason Lee though small add a tremendous amount to the film. Affleck’s acting? Well, better than Gigli.
Some might say Jersey Girl is a little sappy…and in my opinion it is. But it is an excellent date flick and even though we don’t see Silent Bob, there is enough humor to help even the roughest and toughest of you enjoy it. Can’t wait to see this one again on the DVD!

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