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How I Spent My Summer Vacation DVD Review

24 September 2012 8:50 AM, PDT | | See recent HeyUGuys news »

The distribution and reception to Mel Gibson’s latest starring role in How I Spent My Summer Vacation (aka Get the Gringo) is a real sign of just how far this former box office king has fallen.

The film played for barely a week in UK cinemas and went direct to DVD in the states. Even the inferior The Beaver got a proper cinema release despite the surrounding controversy. It’s almost impossible to view the man’s work now without his personal shenanigans in the back of your mind but taken on its own terms, How I Spent My Summer Vacation is a proper return to the amoral badass Gibson made his own in films like Payback and Mad Max.

Beginning with a full tilt police chase at the Us-Mexican border after a bank robbery, the film is hard-boiled, grubby neo noir all the way. The opening scene fills »

- Chris Holt

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Win: How I Spent My Summer Vacation on Blu-ray

18 September 2012 2:00 AM, PDT | Obsessed with Film | See recent Obsessed with Film news »

Available to own on DVD & Blu-ray for the first time from 24th September 2012 , How I Spent my Summer Vacation is directed by Adrian Grunberg and produced by and also starring Oscar winner, Mel Gibson (Edge of Darkness), Peter Stormare (Lockout) and Dean Norris (Breaking Bad).

We have three copies of How I Spent My Summer Vacation on Blu-ray to give away to our readers.

How I Spent my Summer Vacation opens with an explosive high-speed car chase. With a boot-load of cash, and a dying partner in the backseat, Driver (Mel Gibson) is trying to outrun the U.S. Border Patrol. He spectacularly crashes on the Mexican side of the border and is apprehended by corrupt Mexican authorities. Following his arrest, he is sent to the strange and dangerous world of ‘El Pueblito’, the worst prison in all of Mexico. Gibson is determined to get his cash back but he »

- Matt Holmes

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Mel Gibson's 'How I Spent My Summer Vacation': First 5 minutes - video

17 September 2012 1:19 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Mel Gibson's latest movie How I Spent My Summer Vacation has debuted its first five minutes exclusively through Digital Spy. The film, titled Get the Gringo for the Us, sees Gibson take on the role of 'Driver', a criminal who learns to survive in a Mexican prison with the help of a 10-year-old boy. Director Adrian Grunberg told Digital Spy of the sequence: "As important as opening sequences are, and as common as car chases are, I don't remember one running across the border. Speed. That is the one thing I needed from the beginning. Real speed. "Not speed achieved by editing, (more) »

- By Simon Reynolds

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Blu-ray Review: How I Spent My Summer Vacation

12 September 2012 7:36 AM, PDT | Blogomatic3000 | See recent Blogomatic3000 news »

How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Stars: Mel Gibson, Peter Stormare, Dean Norris, Kevin Hernandez, Tenoch Huerta, Bob Gunton, Aaron Cohen | Written byAdrian Grunberg, Mel Gibson | Directed by Adrian Grunberg

Everybody’s favourite anti-Semite Mel Gibson returns to our screens in How I Spent My Summer Vacation, a back to basics action thriller set in a Mexican prison. The film was formerly known as Get the Gringo – is it too preposterous to presume that after the latest allegations involving Gibson’s intolerance ‘issues’, the film’s distributors decided to opt out of lumbering their film with a title that carries anything approaching baggage pertaining to race? Maybe. Whatever the reason, a pretty full-on actioner has been given the kind of title one would probably assume belongs to a weak Katherine Heigl rom com.

The film begins with Gibson driving a getaway car in a clown mask with a bag full of someone else’s money, »

- Jack Kirby

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Get the Gringo | Review

24 July 2012 12:30 PM, PDT | SmellsLikeScreenSpirit | See recent SmellsLikeScreenSpirit news »

Director: Adrian Grunberg Yes, I'm aware that Mel Gibson's loonier than a shithouse rat. I've heard the audio tapes of the rants. I know. It's been a long, drawn out and painfully public unraveling. And yes, I'm aware that his last few films have been busts (although I'll admit to being one of the few critics I know that had good things to say about The Beaver). Still, his latest endeavor, Get the Gringo, strikes me as an odd project, if for no other reason than its complete bypass of theaters to go the VOD route on DirectTV before being released on DVD and blu-ray. I know his box-office draw is questionable, at best, but I still assume that a violent south-of-the-border prison crime drama starring Mel Gibson would be sure money in American theaters. But then what do I know about business? »

- Linc Leifeste

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Interview: Writer/Producer Stacy Perskie Talks ‘Get The Gringo’ & Mel Gibson

24 July 2012 8:47 AM, PDT | | See recent Screen Rant news »

Get The Gringo (also known as How I Spent My Summer Vacation) has just been released on DVD and Blu-Ray following a platformed release on DirecTV and VOD.

Screen Rant spoke with the film’s producer and co-writer, Stacy Perskie about working with Mel Gibson – as well as discussed what it is like to shoot a film in a real life Mexican prison.

You can also read an interview with the film’s director, Adrian Grunberg - here.

How did you first become involved in Get the Gringo?

It was one day working with Mel Gibson on Apocalypto. I went to visit him in his office in Los Angeles and he started talking to us about the idea of making a film in a Mexican prison – about an American in a Mexican prison. He wanted Adrian (Grunberg) to ...

Click to continue reading Interview: Writer/Producer Stacy Perskie Talks ‘Get The Gringo »

- Niall Browne

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‘Get The Gringo’ Director Adrian Grunberg on Mexican Prison & Working With Mel Gibson

23 July 2012 8:58 AM, PDT | | See recent Screen Rant news »

Get The Gringo (also known as How I Spent My Summer Vacation in some international markets) has just been released on DVD and Blu-Ray following an interesting release pattern on DirecTV and VOD. The film has achieved good reviews (read ours), with many calling it a return to form for its star (and co-writer and producer) Mel Gibson.

Screen Rant spoke with the film’s director Adrian Grunberg , a former Assistant Director who is making his directorial debut with the film. Grunberg talks about working with Mel Gibson, as well as discussing what it’s like directing an old-fashioned action film in Mexico.


Tell me about the genesis of the script. Were you attached to the film as a writer first or as a director?

You say attached, which is a ...

Click to continue reading ‘Get The Gringo’ Director Adrian Grunberg on Mexican Prison & Working With Mel Gibson


- Niall Browne

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Weinberg Reviews Get The Gringo

18 July 2012 4:00 PM, PDT | Screen Anarchy | See recent Screen Anarchy news »

I'm not sure if Mel Gibson told his first-time director that he wanted his new movie to be a certifiably insane concoction of Walter Hill characterization and Sam Peckinpah brutality, but Adrian Grunberg's Get the Gringo feels like it just flopped right out of 1978. The only thing separating this movie from that era is that Mel Gibson would look a little old for 1978. That's not to say that the sweaty, kinetic, and bizarrely violent Get the Gringo is as good as a Walter Hill or Sam Peckinpah film, but hey, if Mr. Gibson still has a little more action tucked into his back pocket, he has found a few admirable influences for his latest exploit. Produced and co-written by the controversial Gibson, »

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On DVD: Mel Gibson's Back! in 'Get the Gringo' (Plus Giveaway); 'Casa de Mi Padre,' 'Three Stooges' and More

17 July 2012 4:54 PM, PDT | Fandango | See recent Fandango news »

Get the Gringo Say what you want about the man's behavior in the last few years, he's still a compelling actor onscreen--and Gringo marks a return to his action-blasting movies of yore. He plays a guy known only as "Driver" who gets tossed into a grimy Mexican prison by some crooked cops and then swaggers, smirks and snarks his way out with the help of a 10-year-old he meets when they share cigarettes (yes, really). First-time director Adrian Grunberg gives a great gritty, dirty feel to the proceedings (you'll feel like taking a shower after watching it), and there's plenty of bloodshed and gunfire to please the most hardcore action fan. It's ridiculously--and thoroughly--entertaining. Mel, this is the guy we want back--for good. Extras: Making-of, "El...

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Exclusive: Kevin Hernandez Talks Get the Gringo Blu-ray

17 July 2012 2:40 PM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

Kevin Hernandez talks Get the Gringo, on Blu-ray and DVD starting July 17th

You may remember Kevin Hernandez as the adopted foster child with a strong taste for cherry bombing bathrooms in The Sitter. He returns this week in Get the Gringo, playing opposite Mel Gibson as a youngster forced to live inside a sprawling Mexican prison with his prostitute mother.

We recently caught up with Kevin to chat about his experiences in bringing this film to the screen, and as it turns out, he and Mel Gibson have a lot more in common than exploding toilets. Read on for our conversation, then be sure to pick up Get The Gringo on Blu-ray and DVD, in stores today!

Does this type of prison that we see in the film actually exist in Mexico?

Kevin Hernandez: Oh, absolutely. We shot this in a real prison. They just moved the prisoners »

- MovieWeb

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Get the Gringo Swag and More at Comic-Con International

6 July 2012 3:24 PM, PDT | | See recent Comicmix news »

Get the Gringo, the latest action-comedy starring Mel Gibson, will be making its debut on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Download July 17, 2012

Before the film comes home, it will be making an appearance at Sdcc at Fox Booth #4313, where attendees can pre-order the film and participate in numerous activities. Fans will also be treated to loads of cool swag, including an exclusive mini-poster where fans are tasked to find the ‘Gringo’s’.

In addition to the mini-posters, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment will be hosting a few fun activities to promote the release, including photo-ops with Lucha libre wrestlers and sexy ring girls (on Friday, July 13 and Saturday, July 14, 2012).

Attendees can also take part in the #GetheGringo San Diego Comic-con social media experience. The ring girls will be carrying posters with an exclusive Qr code and fans who scan the code, post photos of the wrestlers via Twitter (using #GettheGringo) or upload pictures to Facebook, »

- Robert Greenberger

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Movie Review - How I Spent My Summer Vacation (2012)

14 May 2012 2:35 PM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

How I Spent My Summer Vacation (a.k.a Get the Gringo), 2012.

Directed by Adrian Grunberg.

Starring Mel Gibson, Kevin Hernandez, Daniel Gimenez Cacho, Dolores Heredia, Peter Stormare, Dean Norris and Bob Gunton.


A career criminal is sent to a tough Mexican prison where he learns to survive with the help of a young boy.

How I Spent My Summer Vacation is a return to form for many things. It’s a return to form for the action genre, unapologetic onscreen violence, dark black humour, simple and straightforward storytelling, and most encouragingly of all, for Mel Gibson. The film is one of the most refreshing I’ve seen this year, and it’s all about something which is increasingly missing in films as the years go on - star power. Personally, I’m bored of comic book or ‘young adult’ novels taking the box office by storm, each of »

- flickeringmyth

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This week's new films

11 May 2012 4:08 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Dark Shadows (12A)

(Tim Burton, 2012, Us) Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green, Chloë Grace Moretz, Jackie Earle Haley. 113 mins

Another expensive pop-gothic fantasy (remake) for Depp and Burton's gallery – how long before either they get bored or we do? This time Johnny's an effete 18th-century vampire, reawakened in 1972 to reunite with his dysfunctional Addams-like descendants and marvel at the modern world. Expect fish-out-of-water silliness, a light shade of darkness, and the usual descent into messiness.

Café De Flore (15)

(Jean-Marc Vallée, 2011, Can) Vanessa Paradis, Kevin Parent, Hélène Florent. 121 mins

Music and mystery add a great deal to this well-made emotional drama, which switches between a present-day DJ and a 1970s mother (Paradis) whose child has Down's syndrome.

Beloved (15)

(Christophe Honoré, 2011, Fra/UK/Cze) Chiara Mastroianni, Ludivine Sagnier, Catherine Deneuve. 139 mins

Using flashbacks and musical moments, Honoré tells the story of a former prostitute, her daughter and the men in their lives. »

- Steve Rose

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How I Spent My Summer Vacation – review

11 May 2012 8:20 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

If he hadn't poisoned his reputation so utterly, this lively caper-thriller about a bankrobber who crosses into Mexico might have put Mel Gibson back on top

Mel Gibson has a disconcerting habit of releasing good films just when his reputation as a human being is lower than low. When clinching evidence emerged six years ago that he was a loathsome bigot, Gibson released his Mayan jungle nightmare Apocalypto and it turned out to be really good. Now, having just emphatically restated how deeply unpleasant and messed up he is personally, he has produced, co-written and starred in this lively, non-pc caper-thriller, with touches of Elmore Leonard and Quentin Tarantino; it's the directing debut from Adrian Grunberg, first assistant director on Apocalypto. Gibson plays a bankrobber and grifter who crosses into Mexico in a getaway car containing millions of dollars; he is arrested by a couple of crooked Federales who waltz off with his loot, »

- Peter Bradshaw

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Interview with Adrian Grunberg, Director of How I Spent My Summer Vacation

11 May 2012 8:00 AM, PDT | | See recent HeyUGuys news »

Adrian Grunberg has made that shift from his role of 1st Ad (he’s worked on a number of big-budget action-orientated Hollywood features including Man on Fire, Apocalypto and Master and Commander) to director for the new Mel Gibson comedy shoot em’ up, How I Spent my Summer Vacation.

He spoke to us recently about making that transition and working alongside the famed Hollywood A-lister (this is his third venture with Gibson, following the aforementioned 2006 Mayan epic and Edge of Darkness).

HeyUGuys: You’re credited as one of the co-writers alongside your star. Where did the idea come from?

Adrian Grunberg: It came from Mel originally. He thought up the idea of an American ending up in a Mexican prison, so from that we started researching and came up with the gringo [Gibson’s character] and worked our ideas around. Little by little the story started developing.

The film’s prison infrastructure »

- Adam Lowes

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How I Spent My Summer Vacation Review: Entertaining, Low-Key Gibson Fare

10 May 2012 8:52 AM, PDT | Obsessed with Film | See recent Obsessed with Film news »

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Outburst after outburst, toil after toil, and Mel Gibson incredulously plods on, albeit in less familiar forms. His last film, the criminally underrated The Beaver, was a box office flop, likely not just for its peculiar premise, but due to Gibson’s much-publicised – and seemingly never-ending – array of personal demons. That his latest film, How I Spent My Summer Vacation, did not even secure American theatrical distribution – instead opting for the Video-on-Demand route earlier this month – is a worrying sign for the actor’s career, but controversy aside, pound-for-pound, he can still spit expletives and shoot guns with the best of his caste.

No matter the criticisms people will have of Gibson the man, Gibson the actor will never be criticised for half-assing his way through an assignment. That the first sight we see of the actor is him decked out in a clown outfit, fleeing »

- Shaun Munro

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How I Spent My Summer Vacation review

10 May 2012 8:26 AM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Mel Gibson attempts to reboot his career with the crime caper, How I Spent My Summer Vacation. Here’s Michael’s review of a surprisingly good action film...

Let’s face it. If you were Mel Gibson, you would want a holiday. But he’s not jetting off into the sunset just yet. No, with his public reputation in tatters, and his movie career in freefall, the actor-filmmaker has drafted his own action-packed comeback, the sweat-soaked, bullet-ridden lark How I Spent My Summer Vacation.

Gibson stars as a grizzled career criminal - a Man-With-No-Name listed in the production notes as Driver - who within minutes literally jumps the USA-Mexico border with a car full of cash. Apprehended by the corrupt Mexican police force, the crook is banged up in an open-plan prison-cum-slum, while the coppers make off with the dough. Left to fend for himself in this minimum-security favela, Driver »

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How I Spent My Summer Vacation Review

10 May 2012 6:00 AM, PDT | | See recent HeyUGuys news »

After failing to win over audiences as a latter day, burnt-out Jim Henson figure in The Beaver, Mel Gibson returns to more comfortable territory in the funny and surprisingly hard-edged prison comedy-actioner, How I Spent my Summer Vacation.

Narrating the action via a wry, seen-it-all-before voice-over, Gibson plays a career criminal who, in the opening scene (and dressed in a clown costume), is giving chase to both Mexican and Us police as he straddles the border, following a robbery which has left him with $4 million dollars of Mob money. Caught by the corrupt arm of that neighbouring law enforcement, he’s promptly dispatched to El Pueblito, a tough-as-nails prison village which wouldn’t look out of place in the post-apocalyptic landscapes he roamed as Mad Max.

In there, he meets a precocious, chain-smoking 10 year-old who is being mysteriously protected by the facility’s criminal rulers. Becoming a twisted surrogate father figure to the young chap, »

- Adam Lowes

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Stealing from an Inmate – Exclusive Clip from How I Spent my Summer Vacation

10 May 2012 3:00 AM, PDT | | See recent HeyUGuys news »

This is our second clip from Adrian Grunberg’s prison set action movie starring Mel Gibson and it gives a fair impression of the violent tone at play here.

You can see the first clip here and it gives a good introduction to the brutal world Gibson’s character falls into. This new clip follows on from nicely and has Gibson taking a fairly unusual approach to prison toilet etiquette.

Here’s a synopsis for you lucky people,

It’s been a bad day for Driver (Gibson) and it’s not getting any better. He just made a big haul of millions that would give him a nice summer vacation on easy street. A good idea that went south – literally. During a high-speed car chase with the Us Border Patrol, and a bleeding body in his back seat, Driver flips his car smashing through the border wall, tumbling violently, coming to a stop … in Mexico. »

- Jon Lyus

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How I Spent My Summer Vacation Review

9 May 2012 7:14 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Director: Adrian Grunberg

Cast: Mel GibsonKevin Hernandez, Dolores Heredia, Daniel Gimenez Cacho

Certificate: 15

Running time: 95 minutes

Synopsis: After nabbing muchos moolah, career criminal ‘Driver’ (Gibson) makes a desperate bid for freedom via the Mexican border, but soon falls foul of corrupt local law enforcement. Separated from his swag and imprisoned Driver formulates a plan to regain his freedom and loot whilst upsetting the balance of power behind bars….

So who knows what a Gringo is? Exactly, we all do right? So why on earth Gibbo would insult the UK’s collective intelligence by changing the film’s moniker from its Us  title, the apt and rather snappy Get The Gringo, to the droll and crappy How I Spent My Summer Vacation is a mystery. Still, a rose by any other name and all that vajazzle. Co-written, produced, and starring Gibson, it’s hard not to view this movie as a contrived vanity project, »

- Joe Upton

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2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009

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