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Dogma

Director/Writer:Kevin Smith
Lions Gate Films; R; 125 minutes
Release:11/99
Cast:Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, George Carlin, Linda Fiorentino, Chris Rock, Salma Hayek

From Clerks to Catholicism, Kevin Smith has come a long way ... but he hasn't abandoned his schoolboy wit and irreverent pop cultural glee. Dogma is a movie about religion, faith, and morality. It's self-confident enough to take these issues seriously without curtailing Smith's Qwik-Stop humor.

Matt Damon and Ben Affleck were angels before they got kicked out of heaven and demoted to Wisconsin. They may be able to gain entrance again due to a cosmic loophole, but if they do, they will prove God fallible and negate all existence. Several players are key to the cosmological (and at times, scatological) drama: Chris Rock as the indignant 13th prophet, George Carlin as a pop-Catholic revivalist, Salma Hayek as the stripper/muse, and Linda Fiorentino as the abortion-clinic worker whose lapse into atheism might need to change if she's going to stop the angelic buddies from ending everything. Smith's script keeps things brisk, vivid, serious, and silly.