Title: Tough Sh*t: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good
Author: Kevin Smith
Release Date: March 20, 2012
Publisher: Penguin Audio (Audio) / Gotham (Print)
Genre: Memoir, Non-Fiction, Audiobook
Rating: 4 out of 5
Kevin Smith, writer and director of cult films such as Clerks, Mallrats, and Chasing Amy and perhaps best known as Silent Bob, discusses his career, family, and his decision to leave moviemaking in this memoir.
I was a huge fan of Kevin Smith’s movies when I was in high school, and though I’ve grown out of his sense of humor a bit, I was still intrigued by his latest memoir, Tough Sh*t. I’ve heard Smith speak, and I know he’s great at it, full of stories and interesting tidbits, so I was eager for this book. I listened to it on audio, with Smith himself as a very capable and humorous narrator. The audiobook is unabridged and runs about six hours.
Tough Sh*t was thoroughly entertaining. Smith told some stories I’d heard before, namely about how he met his wife and their courtship, as well as many I hadn’t. I found his insights about the Weinsteins and Miramax absolutely fascinating. He tells inside stories and delivers a lot of information about making movies. If you’re at all interested in how movies get made, especially small independent movies, this is an absolute must. It was incredibly interesting to listen to Smith’s experiences with Hollywood, the good and the bad.
That being said, Smith’s dirty mouth and crazy obsession with sex might mar the listening/reading experience for those who are sensitive to that sort of thing. His sense of humor is juvenile, to be sure, and while he can be very funny, it can get old fast. Luckily, he’s in top form on this audiobook, so as long as you can deal with crude humor, it shouldn’t bother you too much.
Smith also discusses more serious anecdotes in Tough Sh*t; for example, he opens up about being kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight for being too fat to fly. It’s a heartbreaking story, especially with Smith’s honesty about how devastating and demeaning it was, and he tells it well. Smith also discusses his wife, Jennifer, and his ode to her is pure beauty. He discusses how much she gave up so that he could follow his career, and how he doesn’t appreciate it or her enough. It’s so heartfelt that it brought tears to my eyes.
If you were once or are now a Kevin Smith fan, you should definitely pick up Tough Sh*t. I highly recommend listening to this book on audio, as Smith is talented and really performs for the listener. It was a lot of fun, and I was surprised at how much I learned, which is always a winning combination.