I know this isn't a CD, but it has the same shape as a CD. Seriously though, this DVD by one of my favorite directors, Michel Gondry (Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind), has a theme that is very relevant to what many of us do. Plus it's really funny. Musician Mos Def, who is a surprisingly soulful actor, works in what must be one of the last VHS rental stores left (in the world?) in Passaic, NJ. His friend, played by Jack Black, accidentally erases all the tapes in the store while the boss is out of town. In order to salvage the situation, the two remake all the movies themselves, acting as actors, directors, cameramen and editing in-camera. To their surprise, all their customers prefer the new, homemade versions over the "real" movies and soon there's lines out the door to rent their homemade movies, which they refer to as 'Sweded' (see the movie to find out where the term comes from). The message here is that people embrace the more personal approach of the Sweded films over the corporate boardroom mentality of the real movies. It's analogous to the many indie labels and self released recordings that most of us work on, compared to the forgettable pop swill that makes up most of the major label's current releases. On a side note, Gondry was a drummer in a French indie band who got sidetracked making music videos for folks like Björk and the White Stripes and then started directing movies. Fans of his work might also want to check out the Ryko DVD from The Directors Series titled Michel Gondry. I think Tape Op readers will probably enjoy this movie, and even if you don't agree with my interpretation of it you'll probably laugh a lot. (www.warnerbros.com) -JB

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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