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Be Kind Rewind, an exhibition of new work by Michel Gondry, opens at Deitch Projects on February 16, 2008, shortly before his identically titled film is released in theaters.
Be Kind Rewind is a film about two childhood friends living in Pasaic, New Jersey, trying to make ends meet. After one of the characters accidentally gets his brain magnetized by a local power plant, he visits the video store his and unknowingly erases all of the video tapes in the store’s inventory.
The characters decide to make their own homemade versions of popular films in a junkyard behind the store. These new “sweded” films—recreations using commonly available, everyday materials—prove to be more popular with the customers than the originals, making the two friends local celebrities.
For the exhibition, Michel Gondry will be recreating the video store in the gallery, complete with a back lot containing a variety of movie sets where visitors can make their own renditions of films. All videos created in the gallery can be viewed and rented in the store. About the project, Gondry states, “I don’t intend nor have the pretension to teach how to make films. Quite the contrary. I intend to prove that people can enjoy their time without being part of the commercial system and serving it. Ultimately, I am hoping to create a network of creativity and communication that is guaranteed to be free and independent from any commercial institution.”
Be Kind Rewind is Deitch Projects’ second exhibition with Michel Gondry. In September 2006, the gallery presented The Science of Sleep: An Exhibition of Sculpture and Creepy Pathological Little Gifts, which coincided with the release of his film by the same name. Deitch Projects’ involvement with Michel Gondry reflects the gallery’s interest in presenting projects of creative people working in fields related to fine art who approach their medium similarly to artists of painting and sculpture. Michel Gondry’s work is exhibited in the tradition of conceptual and performance art, not only as a commercial film.
Jack Black and Mos Def star in Be Kind Rewind, a unique comedy from Academy Award-winning writer/director Michel Gondry (Dave Chappelle's Block Party, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind).
Black stars as a loveable loser stuck in a life that's too small for his big dreams. But when he unintentionally erases all the tapes in a video store where his best friend (Mos Def) works, he devises a plan to satisfy the store's few loyal customers by re-creating and re-filming every movie they decide to rent. Be Kind Rewind features a cast that also includes Danny Glover, Melonie Diaz and Mia Farrow. It is scheduled for a February 22, 2008 release.
I have removed the trailer from this post because the auto-start feature was making the blog take too long to load. But you can see it here.
The movies' official website is filled with fun bits about "sweding" and lots of interactive fun. They've even 'sweded' a myspace page for michel gondry:
So, if reading about and watching the trailer just aren't enough fun for you, you can 'swede yourself' on their site by picking from a movie genre and uploading your pic to the cover.
Also, the site Film•Ick has a fun collection of Gondry's sketches for the film. See them here.
get your fun wallpapers and downloads here.
Addendum: despite being a great fan of some of Michel Gondry's work, I think this was one of the worst movies I've ever seen in my life. I don't even recommend renting it.