Recently the website chose a film that best represent each of our fifty states. Examples. They said "Fargo" best reps North Dakota and honestly, what else would you pick off the top of your head? But Georgia is best represented by "Forrest Gump" in their opinion.


Only some of the film was shot in Georgia and it was set in Alabama in the fictitious town of Greenbow. They reference Alabama quite often. So this seems dumber than, well, Forrest Gump.

Okay, so what did they pick for a movie best representing New Jersey? Jersey native Kevin Smith's "Clerks." It's a fine choice. It definitely captured a time and a place and a Jersey culture of a certain Gen X generation. But are there even better?

Our listeners thought so.

"Comic Book Men" Panel At New York Comic Con
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We challenged Deminski & Doyle listeners to come up with a movie they thought best represented the Garden State and these movies were just some of what was called in.

Let's get the other Kevin Smith movie out of the way first. While my choice would be "Chasing Amy" with its this-side-of-the-river attitude, its bar scene with so many Jersey references and its quintessential diner scene with one of Kevin Smith's best acting moments, a caller chose "Mall Rats."

A movie that takes place almost entirely in a mall is so Jersey centric it's insane. Even though it wasn't shot here (was actually filmed at The Mall Of America in Minnesota) it definitely reps New Jersey.

Then there's "New Jersey Drive" for a whole other type of Jersey culture.

The culture of joy riding in stolen cars in Newark in the 90's was a thing, and good or bad this movie put a human face on it all.

To lighten things up, how about "Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle" for representing?

Rednecks, cops and a stoned AF Neil Patrick Harris all encountered on a ridiculous New Jersey quest.

"Eddie and the Cruisers" was called in.

Rock and roll and the Jersey Shore club scene in a movie that screams Garden State.

"The Wrestler" was also selected to represent New Jersey.

Beyond the Jersey grit and attitude, all one needs is to read the filming locations to see this as a love letter to New Jersey. Rahway, Elizabeth, Dover, Hasbrouck Heights, Linden, Frenchy's Bar and Grill in Roselle Park, Stiletto in Carlstadt, Convention Hall in Asbury Park, and that's just a partial list.

Speaking of love letters to New Jersey, "Garden State" was Zach Braff's.

He plays a guy coming home to Jersey for his mom's funeral after being estranged from family for a decade. Shot in places like Tenafly, Mahwah, Livingston, Cranford and more, it reps the hell out of New Jersey.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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