VOTD: ‘[the films of] Michel Gondry’

We’ve been following Kees van Dijkhuisen‘s “[the films of]” since the very beginning, and with the latest video, we’ve now reached the halfway point of his yearlong, twelve-part project. Like the other installments before it, “[the films of] Michel Gondry” focuses on a director’s body of work, showcasing his unique style through a montage of carefully selected clips from his oeuvre. Relive the whimsy and poignancy of a Gondry film in just two and a half minutes, after the jump.

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This Week in DVD is a new column on /Film compiling all the latest info regarding new DVD releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy, Circuit City, and Fry’s.

The Good

As disappointed as I was personally by Be Kind Rewind, the latest film from director Michel Gondry (of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind fame), there’s no denying that the film’s garnered a positive response amongst both audiences and critics, and thus, it would be unfair of me to label it under “The Bad.” The premise is undeniably terrific: two video store employees find their tapes completely erased and decide to resolve the problem by shooting their own zero-budget remakes. If nothing else, I’m glad this film was made because it led to the wondrous filmmaking development known as “sweding,” which has led to such hilarious reworkings of classics as Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: The only extra offered here is a featurette that essentially acts as a tribute to the town where the film was set. Additionally, there’s been one scene added to the film for the DVD, dubbed “Michel Gondry’s Added Train Scene.” It’s unfortunate that not even the full uncut “sweded” films have been made available, which I’m sure many fans would have loved to see.

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$17.99 $17.99 $19.99 $17.99

For those who enjoy warm, heartfelt dramas and don’t mind having to read subtitles, this intimate tale exploring illegal immigration from the perspective of a mother and young boy attempting to reunite across the Mexican/US Border is definitely worthy of a rental. Like so many dramas of its kind, it’s said to be sentimental and manipulative, but those things can be overlooked in favor of the solid lead performances and touching storytelling.
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: An audio commentary, deleted scenes, and a couple making-of featurettes.

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$19.99 $19.99 $19.99 N/A

What? Bonus Disc
Where? Target

Showtime’s crude, edgy sitcom is gathering all 12 episodes of its first season and heading to DVD. The show stars David Duchovny as a drug-sex-and-booze-loving LA writer who hates his job and finds himself at a loss trying to handle his relationship with his daughter and ex-girlfriend. The critical response so far has been mostly positive, claiming that the show is brisk, charmingly crass, and that it has just enough wit to sustain it.
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: Nothing, unless you count Showtime’s default inclusion of two other TV show episodes (the ones here being from Dexter and The Tudors).

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$26.99 $29.99 $27.99 N/A

What? Bonus Disc
Where? Target

The Bad

Kate Hudson may be attractive, but she’s got nothing on Jessica Alba, and seeing as how Alba was the only good thing about Into the Blue, which Fool’s Gold is basically identical to, that doesn’t bode well for the film’s quality. Add to that an utter lack of chemistry among its lead stars and gags that only qualify as comedy in the loosest sense of the word, and you have yourself one hell of a forgettable 90 minutes.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: A gag reel and a featurette detailing the repairing of McConaughey and Hudson.

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $16.99 $13.99 $13.99

With a 3.2 out of 10 ranking on IMDB as of writing this, it’s hard to tell whether Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins is actually even worse the trailers indicated or there’s just some major backlash over African American-based comedies following the increased popularity of Tyler Perry films. Whatever the case, I think we can be rest assured that there’s no harm in skipping yet another Martin Lawrence film, because the prospect of it being stomach-churningly awful continues to remain several times more likely than it being halfway decent.
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: A commentary, deleted scenes, outtakes, a making-of, and reflections from the cast on their own experiences returning home after becoming a success.

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$17.99 $16.99 $13.99 $13.99

In case you were wondering what happened to that terrible-looking Antonio Banderas/Meg Ryan action-romantic-comedy about an up-and-coming FBI agent who’s given the task of finding out if his mom’s boyfriend is a prominent gang leader, the answer lies on DVD, where it’s been dumped without even the slightest attempt at making it look like anything beyond the turd it’s guaranteed to be. For the unsuspecting, the high profile cast alone will probably convince people to give it a rent, but hopefully hearing the film’s laughably silly premise will encourage people to look elsewhere.
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: Deleted scenes and a making-of featurette.

Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
N/A $19.99 $19.99 $19.99

Also available this week…
Chaos Theory – Rails & Ties – Just Add Water – Jericho (Season 2) – Super High Me – The Sword in the Stone (45th Anniversary Special Edition) – ER (Season 9) – Burn Notice (Season 1) – So I Married an Axe Murderer (Special Edition) – Caramel

Discuss: What are you planning to rent or buy this week?

The Specials

Exclusive: Free $5 gift card with purchase of both The Sword in the Stone (45th Anniversary Edition) and The Jungle Book 2 (Special Edition).

Exclusive: Free e-movie cash (up to $7.50) to see Hancock when you buy any of the following $9.99 and $14.99 DVDs.
$9.99 – Bad Boys, Bad Boys II, The Fifth Element, Stand By Me, Snatch, Underworld, Underworld: Evolution
$14.99 – Men in Black II, Gridiron Gang, Ghost Rider

$14.99 – Weeds (Season 1), Weeds (Season 2)
$19.99 – Dexter (Season 1), The Tudors (Season 1)
$27.99 – Lost (Season 3), Desperate Housewives (Season 3)

Exclusive: Free e-movie cash (up to $7.50) to see Hancock when you buy Men in Black on Blu-ray.

$4.99 – Black Hawk Down, A Knight’s Tale, A History of Violence, Capote, Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Tears of the Sun, Domino, Running Scared, The Untouchables, Syriana, Collateral, Patriot Games, Minority Report, Sleepers, Snatch, and more…

$6.99 – Inside Man, The 40 Year Old Virgin (Unrated), Bruce Almighty, The Jerk (26th Anniversary Edition), Assault on Precinct 13, Two for the Money, Bring it On, Waist Deep, and more..

Buy one, get one free ($14.99) – Memento (Limited Edition), Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Midnight Express (20 Anniversary Edition), Curse of the Golden Flower, The Da Vinci Code (2-Disc Special Edition), Casino Royale (2-Disc Special Edition), The Fifth Element, Rocky Balboa, Vacancy, and more…

$4.99 – Matchstick Men, Insomnia, Firewall, The Dukes of Hazzard

$5.99 – Monster’s Ball, The Running Man (Special Edition), House of 1000 Corpses

Star Wars – Empire Strikes Back Sweded

Sweded Yoda

You must check out this sweded version of Star Wars – Empire Strikes Back. Rob Kenyon. Mark Breeze, Paul Nadin, Jamie Broadrick, and Leonora Whitehouse filmed this 60-second short film over the course of two days using a lot of cardboard and gaffers tape. Everything was created from scratch, from the costumes to the puppets, from the Ships to the droids.

[flv:http://media2.slashfilm.com/slashfilm/trailers/empiresweded.flv 450 276]

via: Nerdcore

TRON Sweded

TRON Sweded

Michel Gondry’s Be Kind Rewind might have not taken off at the box office, but it definitely spawned a movement of online sweded short films. I’ve seen a lot of said sweded trailer. Some of them are funny, some of them creative, a lot of them are bad (hey, thats what you get in the YouTube generation where everyone has a video camera).

But TRON sweded is probably the best made sweded movie to date. Sure, it lacks the comedy, but what it lacks in fun, it makes up with creative cinematography. Watch TRON sweded below.

[flv:http://media2.slashfilm.com/slashfilm/trailers/tronsweded.flv 460 200]

Once Sweded Movie Trailer

Once Sweded

When Michel Gondry introduced the idea of sweding to the masses in (or to the few people who saw) Be Kind Rewind, I expected a big response on YouTube of fans recreating their favorite movies. And that has happened, but one thing I never expected has started. I always believed the point of sweding movies was to pick a big budget action film, because it would force your hand creatively to try to reproduce the big budget visuals n a pocket change scale.

But people have begun to swede smaller films, like Fox Searchlight’s Once. And somehow it still works. There is something charming about this sweded trailer, even without all the expected cardboard cut out visuals. Check it out after the jump.
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Back to the Future Sweded

Be Kind To the Future

TeamBulletTime saw Michel Gondry’s Be Kind Rewind, and decided to create a sweded version of the Back to the Future trilogy. I thought it was cute enough to post. Check it out below.

Be Kind Rewind

Did Michel Gondry steal the idea from Be Kind Rewind from an episode of Nickelodeon’s The Amanda Show (starring Amanda Bynes) from eight years ago? Probably not, but watch this video that is circulating around the interwebs.

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Be Kind Rewind

In Michel Gondry’s new film Be Kind Rewind, Jack Black and Mos Def must rerecord classic movies to replace broken vhs tapes. The process is described in the film as sweding, or “re-making something from scratch using whatever you can get your hands on.” At the Apple Store tour, Gondry was showing off a Be Kind Rewind movie trailer which he sweded all by himself, which means he played all the characters, constructed all the props and locations. If you haven’t yet, please watch the original Be Kind Rewind movie trailer. Then check out Gondry’s fantastic sweded version below.

[flv:http://media2.slashfilm.com/slashfilm/trailers/gondryrewind.flv 470 351]

Michel Gondry at the Apple Store

Yesterday i got the chance to sit down with Michel Gondry, and I’ll be publishing that interview at a later date. But for now I have something special for you guys. After my interview, the music video turned film director made an appearance at the Apple Store in downtown San Francisco which was moderated by SF360’s Susan Gerhard, and featuring a surprise appearance by Be Kind Rewind star Mos Def. I was in attendance and caught the whole thing on tape.

Gondry talks in depth about his new film Be Kind Rewind before opening the floor up to questions. An Interesting exchange happens where Gondry tells Mos Def that he will direct a music video for the rap artist for free if he comes to Sundanceto do press with him for Be Kind. The whole panel has been broken up into four audio segments (clips from the movie were shown in between). And if anyone is wondering, the photo above was taken with three stills stitched together from my iPhone, not bad. Listen now below, enjoy!

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Michel Gondry’s Apple Store Tour

Michel Gondry's Apple Store Tour

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind director Michel Gondry will be making appearances at Apple Stores in New York, San Francisco and Chicago, to help promote his new film Be Kind Rewind.

Apple has been on a roll with their directors series as of late. Most recently I Am Legend director Francis Lawrence made an appearance, and before that, Wes Anderson and Natalie Portman made appearances to help promote The Darjeeling Limited and the prequel short film Hotel Chevalier (which not so coincidentally featured an iPod and was exclusively made available for free on Apple iTunes). Here’s the details:

Apple Store, San Francisco

Monday, January 7th – 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m
Moderated by SF360’s Susan Gerhard

Apple Store, North Michigan Avenue, Chicago
Tuesday, January 8th – 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m
Moderated by Time Out Chicago’s Ben Kenigsberg

Apple Store, SoHo, New York City
Friday, January 11th, 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m
Moderated by indieWIRE’s Editor in Chief Eugene Hernandez

These Apple events are small and intimate, so seating is limited (hey, it is the Apple Store after all), so arrive early if you want to see Gondry speak.

via: cinematical