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Layer's of Gondry

Leave it to a French person to put the final nail in the coffin of Postmodern irony. Michel Gondry is a very innovative film director (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Science of Sleep) who often has his characters enter magical mental spaces that are filled with fantastic but low budget-like imagery. This imagery is a subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) comment on filmmaking itself and the glossy imagery of Hollywood in particular. It is a complex dialog that ultimately reaffirms the connections between the cinematic image and the mental representation. What is fun and new is Gondry's pseudo-DIY aesthetic.

It makes sense, then, that Gondry is the director for the film "Be Kind, Rewind" starring Jack Black as a magnetized friend of Mos Def, a video store clerk. The two have to recreate the films Jack has accidentally erased. Here is the trailer for the film (pay attention closely):



Ok, here's where Gondry pulls a po-mo twist: he has created his own trailer for the film in the same manner of the characters in the film. This is 3rd order simulacra when you consider he is referencing work in the trailer that was referencing the original film. What we are left with is a crazy, barely referential pastiche of symbols that is, for the most part, impossible to make sense of:

gregory turner-rahman