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Kelsey's Review

Created Jun 28, 2008 10:46PM PST • Edited Jun 28, 2008 10:46PM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Very Good 3.5

    Be Kind Rewind takes great actors and puts them in an amateur setting to center itself around us; the fans. Even though, having to remake all of the big budget films in Be Kind Rewind, is done by mistake, it spurs a realization of purpose, pride, and passion. The bottom line is they end up having a lot of fun adding their own creations and creativity to make their version of films, causing them to become even more enjoyable and in return fun for the audiences to watch.

    Elroy (Glover) owns a small video store, Be Kind Rewind, in a poor neighborhood that is in very bad condition. He is told that if all of the many expenses renovations aren’t made and the business didn’t drastically increase than the building would be demolished in 60 days. When he leaves for the weekend for a trip to investigate other rental stores that seem to be doing much better than his, he leaves Mike (Def) in charge of the store. Mike is told to keep Jerry (Black) out of the store. Jerry is convinced that there is some sort of conspiracy going on with the power plant and it is taking over their minds. He convinces Mike to help him blow up the plant with him. Feeling guilty for not being as responsible as Elroy would have been, he backs out while they are there. Jerry is left there and is drastically electrocuted, causing some sort of electrical transferal.

    Soon the few customers that still come to Be Kind Rewind complain that the tapes that they rented were all blank. They realize that from the electrocution, Jerry’s hands have become magnetic. So all of the movies he came in contact with, which are all of them in the entire store, have been erased. After Mike has no luck getting more tapes, they decide to make their own home video versions of the big blockbuster films to replace the original ones. After doing so, one at a time, their customers actually like them even more so than the original versions. Be Kind Rewind starts doing better business than they ever have before. Mike, Jerry, and Alma (Diaz), a girl who is recruited for the woman’s role in the Rush Hour 2 remake, become local celebrities. However, it doesn’t take things long to blow up in their faces. When Elroy comes back he has a new plan for the store and it doesn’t include any of the videos Mike, Jerry, and Alma have made and not even VHS tapes for that matter. Soon the film industries that originally made the movies get involved and are suing them for millions of dollars and threatening them with jail time so massive that all of them combined could never fully serve in their lifetime. Making these movies had became such a great experience for all of them. They just can’t stop and finally make an original idea, the life story of the owner of Be Kind Rewind.

  3. Great 4.0

    As a Jack Black fan, his performance in the film was very refreshing to see. It brought me back to School of Rock. Black brought his passion of film through a character who wanted to do something with his life and these ultra low budget remakes were his way to do that. Both Jack Black and his character, Jerry, show a great energy and plain old love for film and acting, which really made his appeal all that stronger. I not only comparing this to School of Rock, because the comedy, but because that same drive and passion was displayed through Black as well as his characters that he was able to add such truth to. Mos Def as Mike was the more precautious and subtle one, which gave a good balance between the two of them. Danny Glover does very well here as Leroy, the owner who is desperately trying to keep up with all of the technological changes that are going on around him. One of the most interesting parts of his performance in the film was his pride and appreciation of his past, often portrayed through a 1920’s film style. Mia Farrow also makes an appearance as one of the loyal customers and a close friend of Elroy’s. Her character went from an annoyance, adding hardships to Jerry and Mike’s plan, but her loyalty for the store ended up turning towards fondness for the new films. Just seeing, Melonie Diaz in a less than mediocre performance in Remember the Daze, it was great to see what she was capable of here as Alma. She seemed very natural and added to a lot of the comedy.

  4. Male Stars Great 4.0
  5. Female Stars Great 4.0
  6. Female Costars Great 4.0
  7. Male Costars Great 4.0
  8. Good 3.0

    If all remakes were like the Be Kind Rewind films, than they would be a lot more fun to watch than majority of them we see produced every year. The greatest thing about them is the outrageousness and creative ways they make these high budget and special effect films work. One example of this is when they are shooting Ghostbusters, they want to shoot in the dark, but the setting makes their faces look overly light and almost ghostly themselves. So they photocopy their faces and tape them to their heads and they have their dramatic night shot. Even some of the simple ironies are hilarious such as Jerry’s take on the bossy and rude Miss Daisy in Driving Miss Daisy and Mike’s sarcastic high pitched Chris Tucker performance in Rush Hour 2. They even obtain robot costumes, space suits, and lions drawn on paper and attached to the actors bodies while they fight for the making of Robocop, 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Lion King. Nearly all of the films are from New Line Cinemas. Since it has recently gone out of business, this serves as an homage to all of the films they have produced over the years.

    Be Kind Rewind is a Hollywood film that has an anti-Hollywood feel to it. The tone itself feels more like an independent film than you would expect. The store clerks themselves essentially become independent filmmakers, so this becomes representative of them and serves as a voice to the indy scene, no matter how amateur or goofy the films may seem. It is really about the joy of it and that from making films they like, they end up giving their audience just what they are craving. The original films are loved, but the indie, fan made versions are appreciated so much more at least within this community. If this wasn’t the case than the customers could just go to the more mainstream and Hollywood based video store that actually carry DVD instead of VHS. Also the major, legally backed production companies are portrayed as the enemies, depriving them of sharing or even keeping the films they made in existence. The film also put in to perspective how old the VHS tape has become, as even DVD’s may be a dying form of film. Be Kind Rewind does take place in the present and the old technology used in the store works because they obviously can’t afford anything more advanced.

  9. Direction Good 3.0
  10. Play Good 3.0
  11. Music Good 3.0
  12. Visuals Good 3.0
  13. Content
  14. Risqué 1.6

    There really isn’t much violence in the film aside from a little bit of slapstick humor while they are making the videos.

  15. Sex Titillating 1.6
  16. Violence Fierce 1.6
  17. Rudeness Salty 1.6
  18. Glib 1.6

    It reflects on the past and things that represent it in a reminiscent manner. Most importantly though the real feeling of pride and joy are shown when they make their own film that completely come from their own minds and ideas as well as real life experiences. Those that they remade, served as their start. The real importance of the original films were to serve as inspiration and to motivate imagination through filmmaking, like many great films are to us.

  19. Circumstantial Glib 1.6
  20. Biological Glib 1.6
  21. Physical Glib 1.6


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