Hey there, drinkers!
Tonight we’re rediscovering our faith with the help of Stone’s Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale & Kevin Smith’s 1999 film Dogma. We’ve got a great beer and a great movie paired up for you tonight, so I hope you listen to my Word and heed my infallibility when it comes to unnatural alcoholic-cinematic combinations. Let’s get started, shall we?
Tonight’s film is the religiously anti-religious Kevin Smith film Dogma. Equal parts religious lesson and sacrilegious comedy, Dogma utterly refutes religion by showcasing it in a very literal and sarcastic fashion. For those who are not indoctrinated, Dogma follows the quest of a Wisconsin Planned Parenthood employee who is tasked with stopping two angels (a very young and adorable Matt Damon & Ben Affleck) who wish to regain entrance to Heaven and obliterate all existence in the process. In classic Kevin Smith fashion, the film is dominated by long-winded, articulate and absurd speeches that very plainly explain esoteric subjects. Biblical history is expertly intertwined with film nerd history, all with the biting edge of Smith’s “nothing-is-sacred” style of comedy. I mean, George Carlin plays an Arch Bishop and New Jersey is a portal to Heaven. You get the picture. Aside from the blunt exposition of plot and Christian mythology, the film is quite entertaining. All of the characters (and actors) acknowledge the absurdity of their plight and have a good laugh about it. There are literally dozens of “Jesus Christ!” exclamations that are uttered by Heavenly creatures, a not-so-subtle wink from the director to the audience. In addition, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, unadulterated by fame, give fantastic performances in roles that would otherwise be too absurd to be successful. In fact, Kevin Smith somehow assembled a fantastic cast for this film, given them insane roles, and made them successfully commit to those roles. And while no one would mistake this film for art, it really is a testament to Kevin Smith’s ingenuity and creativity as writer/director. For those of you who haven’t seen this film (and are not easily made uncomfortable by religious gaffs), I would recommend you see it as a master class in sarcasm.
And did I mention that Alanis Morisette is God? Seems fitting, right?
And in keeping with tonight’s theme, I would have to describe Stone’ Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale as simply divine. This 8.7% whopper pours a thick, deep black with a big head that dissipates slowly. This black ale features big, roasty malt flavor that is balanced well by some sturdy hopping. Reviewers on Beer Advocate noted hints of grapefruit while I mostly tasted toasted malt, which probably means that I just don’t have a defined palette. But for a beer with an 8.7% ABV and a strong malt character, this beer is pretty easy to drink. Not to say that casual drinkers could just pick this up and go to town, but rather it doesn’t have a strong bite to it. It goes down smooth and leaves a nice, hoppy finish that hangs around for awhile. For such a crazy movie, I think this beer matches it pretty well. While the movie is funny enough as is, being a little tipsy by the film’s bloody conclusion doesn’t hurt it. Especially since the film drags a little at about two hours, having 22 ozs. of tasty, strong beer does not hurt.
So there it is, drinkers. A sublimely divine evening that left me with a smile on my face. Great beer. Good movie. It’s hard to ask for much more on a Friday evening. God bless craft beer.
-Sarcastic & cynical
-A bit too much exposition, but it’s Kevin Smith, so what else do you expect?