Video Review: Be Kind Rewind

Be Kind Rewind poster

Director: Michel Gondry (Human Nature, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Science of Sleep)
Writer: Michel Gondry
Producers: Georges Bermann, Julie Fong
Starring: Jack Black, Mos Def, Danny Glover, Melonie Diaz, Mia Farrow
MPAA Rating: R
Running time: 101 min

check out the trailer after the jump…

Click “play” to see the trailer:

IMDb profile
Official Site
Flixster Profile for Be Kind Rewind

Andrew James
Podcaster. Tech junkie. Movie lover. Also games and guitar. I dig music.


  1. Great review Andrew but I have to say I disagree a little.

    I was a bit worried that the gimmick of the sweded videos would go sour quick but the balance was what made this work for me. Jack Black (who I'm not typically a fan of) is a little less annoying than usual here but the really fun guy to watch is Mos Def who adds a little quirk to the character that really works for me.

    The big, big seller was the community aspect which crept in throughout the movie and which actually made me a little teary eyed at the end.

    I will admit I was a bit confused by the bits of the B&W video that ties up the film at the end but that was a little complaint in, what was for me, an immensely enjoyable film.

    I also really liked "Science of Sleep" but I think what I love best is Gondry's DIY approach to everything (something that is even apparent in Science and which overtakes this entire film). Not to mention that I dug the smart, and sometimes backhanded, comments on the movie industry and this whole emerging culture where we're the stars of the movies and how it's not so much about the movies but about the process of getting there, the creativity, the passion. Oh, and who can forget the in your face commentary on Hollywood?

    I love me this movie. Lots.

  2. I too liked the community aspect near the end and admit to feeling properly manipulated. But so much of the rest of the movie borders on boring. I'm not suggesting the whole movie should be the sweded stuff. That would get tedious. But they concentrate so hard on Ghostbusters (giving us nearly the whole movie in 5-10 minutes), then the rest of the sweded films are literally 10-20 second clips at best. I wanted to see the bloody office scene in Robocop, landing on the moon in 2010, Carter and Chan meeting for the first time in Rush Hour, etc. We never get any of this. It's too bad.

    Also, Glover and Farrow were nearly pointless characters in the movie.

  3. I do agree that the Ghostbusters thing was cool but it did set up a false expectation for what else was coming. I too thought we'd get more on the other movies but was surprised to find only slight mention. It may have been better to shorten the GB bit and then we wouldn't feel cheated out of the rest.

    And I agree with Farrow but I'm not so sure about Glover. Sure, he's mostly pointless but he basically sets up the story. I'm not sure it would have worked as well if Def was just the owner of the store and that everything stemmed from there. That set up made Def's character more believable because I never would have bought that a guy like him would ever be running a store but I can buy that he was left in charge of it as a "test".

  4. That was awesome. I'm assuming there's some FX in there because for a moment, Def seems to blend RIGHT in. I love the idea that the camouflage seems so random but then totally works.

  5. Odd, I thought the Ghostbusters stuff went on too long and started to detract from the story and was happy they kept the other sweding sequences short. And the store's impending doom was a MacGuffin, not a major plot point. Yes, a better screen play would make it more relevant, but I enjoyed the rest of movie enough not to be too critical.

    Although Be Kind, Rewind isn't an awesome film for some of the reasons discussed, it was still a good film and I really liked it a lot. In this era of YouTube mashups versus big media and people's right to own their own pop culture under attack it had a lot to say about how we interact with our entertainment.

  6. I thought BKR was one of the most boring things I'd ever seen to be honest, without Kaufman's writing Gondry's direction has not impressed me.

  7. Should be an interesting conversation with Andrew on the topic of this movie which is a mixed bag. Ultimately the movie's key strength is what the movie says about how we consume media post-VCR (which was a brilliant in…) We treat any work that is out in the wild as our own to tinker with and re-create. Professionalism and 'quality' is slowly taking a back-seat to self-control (Think of the Cinema and how many jerks are watching movies along side of you with no consideration…they feel the movie is at their control…the VCR started this by bringing a movie into your livingroom. Now the livingroom mentality has fully set in.

    I find it tellingly hopeful that Michel Gondry sees this as a good thing (community building) rather than a bad thing (teenagers with cellphones at the multiplex texting each other across the auditorium and talking at full volume)

  8. I find that I now have more bad theatre experiences than really good ones. The majority are still somewhere in the middle but the almost always seems to be at least one person who annoys me each time I go to the theatre.

  9. Sunday Night. 10:30pm. Almost always a perfect Cinema experience!

    Oh, that and film festivals. Festivals usually have appreciative and considerate audiences (not always though!), but the multiplex is pretty soulless and can be grating in the wrong circumstances (Friday @ 9pm, Saturday @ 7-9). Sundays usually are great though (that being said, some of the audience was rude at my screening last night, but not too bad)

  10. I found the film pretty vacuous, really left my mind the second I got out of my seat.

    But I will say this: I saw this opening day at the megaplex and everyone was wired prior to the film coming on, but in all my time going to this theatre I have never experienced it so free of nuisance… silence when it needed to be, laughing when it needed to be… I couldnt believe how well Gondry had got the attention of my audience. That said I was pretty bored.

  11. Sunday night is actually the night I usually go also but for some reason there have just been a bunch of annoyances during the past year or so.

    I actually went to my first Tuesday night showing a while ago and I couldn't believe how packed it was.

    Another good night for me is late Thursday nights. I found them even more quiet than Sundays.

    Perhaps that is why I've only actually seen one movie in the theatre so far this year. I could blame it on the lack of good stuff to watch but perhaps its also I just needed a break from the cineplex.

  12. Earliest possible showing on a Saturday. Usually pretty quiet and often cheaper. Plus, depending on your schedule, plenty of afternoon left to hop into something else.

    On the topic of this movie, glad you were able to find something deeper within the context of the plotline. I found it very boring and unfunny. But like Marina said, the final act is fairly touching.

  13. "Earliest possible showing on a Saturday." = Single guy talking who can see movies whenever he feels like. 🙂

    But back on to the movie. I lost all interest in this movie for some reason and I'm guessing it was the overall reviews or perhaps its funk I'm going through where I'd rather sit at home and throw something in the DVD player.


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