Jersey Girl

Recommended for adults. I was pleasantly surprised with this one. I had expected the typical Kevin Smith agenda-driven, overly wordy, excessively profane self-importance of his other movies. But it was not. It was a rather touching and sensitive story about a selfish publicist who has a baby girl and loses his wife, only to be forced into taking care of his child by himself. He learns that people and family are more important than career and personal ambition. Hey, now that is great. And Mr. Smith told the story with less profanity than normal (though arguably still too much). The publicist, played by Ben Affleck, is refreshing in his commitment to his daughter. When was the last time you saw a movie where a guy doesn’t have sex with women since his wife because of his dedication to his little girl and turns down a “free jump” because it isn’t right? Then, when he does give in to a sex opportunity, he is caught before he gets too far by the little girl and faced with his own moral challenge that he told her: “sex is only for married people.” I was shocked. Maybe Smith thought it would be original to have some traditional morality in a movie, and sadly he is right. There is a scene in the beginning where Ben is talking to his baby daughter about her mother and it is over the top, wordy, on the nose, tell us what you are thinking on your sleeve scene. But it wasn’t terrible. This movie convicted me about my own life and keeping people and my marriage as a higher priority than my dreams.