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Be Kind Rewind (2008)


Average Rating: 6.3/10
Reviews Counted: 126
Fresh: 83
Rotten: 43

Critics Consensus: Slighter and less disciplined than Gondry's previous mind-benders.

Average Rating: 5.9/10
Reviews Counted: 35
Fresh: 19
Rotten: 16

Critics Consensus: Slighter and less disciplined than Gondry's previous mind-benders.


Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 204,706


Movie Info

Jerry is a junkyard worker who attempts to sabotage a power plant that he believes is melting his brain. But, when his plan goes awry, the magnetic field that he creates accidentally erases all of the videotapes in a local video store where his best friend Mike works. Fearing that the mishap will cost Mike his job, the two friends team up to keep the store's only loyal customer--a little old lady with a tenuous grasp on reality--from realizing what has happened by recreating and re-filming every … More

PG-13 (for some sexual references)
Directed By:
Written By:
Michel Gondry
In Theaters:
Jun 10, 2008
Box Office:
New Line Cinema - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for Be Kind Rewind

All Critics (128) | Top Critics (36) | Fresh (83) | Rotten (43) | DVD (6)

It's hard to get too cranky about a movie that, at heart, is a tribute to the joy of making things with your friends.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
Top Critic

Takes a clever concept and cobbles a weak story around it.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
USA Today
Top Critic

Long before the movie ends, it slips right off the sprockets.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Be Kind Rewind declares that the riches of cinema history touch each of us personally. Films become so deep a part of us that we own them that our memories of them, whether faithful or fanciful, become their meanings.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Give Be Kind Rewind a little time and an open mind, and it just might grow on you. Its premise is absurd, but adorably so.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Thick stew of awful.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

What a foul junkyard of Quirk it is!

Full Review… | August 27, 2009

A glowing valentine to creativity in opposition to commerce.

Full Review… | June 7, 2009

Sua natureza auto-referencial transforma o filme numa grande homenagem ao próprio cinema.

Full Review… | December 11, 2008
Cinema em Cena

Be Kind Rewind should gather dust on both DVD and VHS shelves.

Full Review… | August 1, 2008
Washington Times

Once the movie starts finding its focus it becomes a very unique experience

Full Review… | July 22, 2008
Sin Magazine

A surprisingly quiet and whimsical comedy about a ridiculous and unlikely series of events that turns into a nearly-as-likely miracle. Best bit: the film's own Sweded preview.

Full Review… | July 17, 2008

An ode to finding one's creative side and the joys of being able to share one's creations with others.

Full Review… | July 11, 2008
Window to the Movies

Tackles the hackneyed with the tender hand and heart of writer/director Michel Gondry.

Full Review… | June 20, 2008

But with a skill that is difficult to pinpoint, Gondry seems to stumble like a fox from this paper-thin plot into a precious little ode to community.

Full Review… | June 9, 2008
Paste Magazine

Director Michel Gondry delivers the first great film of 2008.

Full Review… | May 22, 2008
Windy City Times

'Be Kind Rewind' is a whimsical adventure with genuine affection for its characters, but Gondry's story is essentially weightless, a fanciful flight in search of a raison d'etre.

April 9, 2008
San Francisco Examiner

It's central message is that filmmakers are wonderful people, which is pretty much what you would expect filmmakers to say.

Full Review… | March 26, 2008
Laramie Movie Scope

The process of Sweding soon becomes a community project, another glance back and ahead at the same time.

Full Review… | March 21, 2008

Ultimately trades in schmaltz of the unearned kind.

Full Review… | March 20, 2008
Projection Booth

The remake/parody sequences are outstanding, but Black's all-over-the-place mania and Mos Def's bland orphan hero don't quite tie the rest of the picture together. Still, it has heart.

Full Review… | March 20, 2008
Empire Magazine Australasia

And the film ought to be funny, with Mike and Jerry recreating those films as home movies. But somehow it's not, the laughs are very thin on the ground.

Full Review… | March 19, 2008
At the Movies (Australia)

Brilliant ideas dance on the high side of Creative Street, but Michel Gondry's outlandish premise doesn't stretch far enough to go the distance.

Full Review… | March 16, 2008
Urban Cinefile

The premise of Be Kind Rewind is pure Michel Gondry. The end result is anything but.

Full Review… | March 16, 2008
Creative Loafing


March 2, 2008

corny, cool and beautiful

March 2, 2008

Audience Reviews for Be Kind Rewind


Now, I'll be honest, I find Jack Black to be a so-so actor. At time she can be pretty funny, other times he can be annoying. With Be Kind Rewind, he is very enjoyable, and gives one of his better performances. This is a very good film that is highly entertaining from start to finish, and in many ways, this is a tribute to the love of cinema. The film boasts a fun storyline, and this film is a lot of fun and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. With a good blend of comedy and feel good charm, this is a must see that boasts several film references. In terms of sheer originality, Be Kind Rewind is a standout feature that will satisfy any film lover. Jack Black is very good here, and the chemistry between him and Mos Def is terrific. The rest of the cast are great too, and each actor being something to really make this a must see comedy. I loved this film, and the script was well thought out, original and above all refreshing. There is plenty to enjoy here, and director Michel Gondry has made a film that is well worth your time. This film has plenty of heart, and memorable scenes to really make it a unique film experience. The film has a few weak moments, but overall, there are plenty of strengths here that overshadows the few weak aspects. Be Kind Rewind is a good comedy with plenty of good performances, a great story, and plenty of humor to make it a film that can exceed your expectations. I was surprised with this film, and I think I would enjoy it as much as I did, but I walked away from it, not only enjoying it, but feeling that this among Jack Black's best performances.

Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

Jack Black and Mos Def make a good comedy and entertainment duo in Michael Gondry's heartwarming film, Be Kind Rewind. The film is clever and though has its hiccups, can't be overlooked, especially from the amount of charm and originality it provides. 4/5

Eugene Bernabe
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer


Be Kind Rewind has a decent enough storyline but it's ultimate strength is in the sweet subtext, it's heartfelt quirkiness and surrealist indie stylings. But in equal measure the belly laughs along the way. A lot of people dislike this film but what Michel Gondry is trying to express through it is one simple message, movie's are better when you do them yourself. That little meaningful movies recorded on a camcorder by anyone can be equally as important as commercialist big budget blockbusters.

Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

This is Michel Gondry's delightful ode to handmade DIY craftsmanship at it's finest. The story concerns a bumbling goofball named Jerry who, after becoming magnetized in an unlikely way accidentally erases all the VHS tapes at a declining video store where his friend Mike works. To fix the situation, the two decide to make remakes of all the movies, using themselves and makeshift special effects in a fashion they call "Sweding".

Surprisingly, their no-budget remakes become a hit and actually start to help bring the store out of decline. There are some other issues being dealt with in the film though, and that's both positive and negative. This film tries to do a lot of things, perhaps too many. Not only is it about Sweding, but it also tackles the economic decline of Passaic, New Jersey, and its multicultural population. It also deals with an original film about Fats Waller that Mike and Jerry and the neighborhood residents are forced to make due to legal issues.

You can't fault Gondry for trying to be ambitious, but I think the film is a little overstuffed and a bit undercooked in places as a result. The remake scenes actually aren't really the focus, despite what the marketing campaign would have you believe. Those sequences are some of the best in the film though, especially the single take montage wherein a half dozen films get Sweded.

The film does have his usual, whimsical, quirky touches, and you can really tell this is a film that was designed to strike a chord with anyone who ever tried to make a film regardless of talent, money, or various other factors. This is all about making do with what you have, and that's really why this film works so well. It's just too damn charming not to enjoy.

Jack Black gets manic, but his performance here is closer to High Fidelity than his usual shtick. Def, despite being somewhat unintelligible at times, is also pretty good, and I really like seeing him work as an actor, even though his music career is his real strength. Danny Glover and Mia Farrow give some really fun supporting roles, as does Melonie Diaz. Of course, a little Sigourney Weaver cameo doesn't hurt either.

All in all, a good, but choppy little piece of work. Despite its shortcomings, I really do dig this, and definitely give it a solid recommendation.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

Be Kind Rewind Quotes

When you're walking down the street, and you see a little ghost. What'cha gonna do, you call Ghostbustasssssss!
What's that?
Its the Ghostbusters theme song.
No, it's not.
I'm pretty sure it is.
– Submitted by Ryan A (2 years ago)
This calls for Robocop.
This calls for Robocop to get shot!
– Submitted by Miguel S (2 years ago)
I will shoot you, and I know robot karate.
– Submitted by Evan T (2 years ago)
Anything you will be held against you in the court of robocop.
– Submitted by Evan T (2 years ago)

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