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How They Get There (1997)

 |  Short, Comedy
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 681 users  
Reviews: 4 user

A guy and a girl play copycat with each other from opposite sides of the street, that is, until a slightly abrupt & uncopyable event occurs.


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A guy and a girl play copycat with each other from opposite sides of the street, that is, until a slightly abrupt & uncopyable event occurs.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Comedy





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Technical Specs


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


This short film is featured on the DVD for Work of Director _Spike Jonze, The (2003) (V)_. See more »


When the car collides with "Guy", it is obvious that the windshield is smashed. a few shots later, you can see that the windshield is in perfect condition as the car smashes against the ground. See more »


Featured in The Work of Director Spike Jonze (2003) See more »


Sentimental Journey
Written by Les Brown, Bud Green and Ben Homer
Performed by Juan García Esquivel and his orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

How They Get There
23 May 2003 | by See all my reviews

I saw this short on Atom Films a couple of years ago and loved it so much, it hurt. I thought it was so simple yet creative and romantic that I nearly snuffed myself out after watching it. I was in my cubicle at the time of my first viewing, at a job that was going nowhere real fast and I was shook to the bone. With each effort, Spike never disappointed and with "How They Get There," I had had enough. I thought I had ideas, I thought I had something going, but after seeing what Spike did with this film, and how effortless it seemed, I lost everything. My film, "Girls Without Fathers" bombed. People booed it. It was a thirty-minute muddy movie. I even had walk-outs. Yet Spike had it all. Every single time he hit. Whether it was with Nike's Y2K campaign, or that dog's video "Hey, Old Timer," he was always on. For months after seeing this short I couldn't come up with a single hook. I had no vision, I couldn't even come up with one lousy snippet of dialogue. I couldn't sleep and I even entertained the thought of re-creating this piece, claiming it as my own. People would love me then. I would love me then. Afterall, who had seen it? Just me, as far as I was concerned. But, I never re-created it.

That day, after watching Spike's movie, I shared my thoughts with a married woman. A woman I worked with, just two cubicles over. A woman, who as an independent filmmaker, shook up the local Tulsa, Oklahoma scene with a just-as-stunning-as-How They Get There picture entitled, "Jimmy." She was marvelous, sun-kissed, stunning as a queen bee, and tapped into tons of new ideas, ideas she wasn't afraid to share because they were perfection and because they were abundant. Ideas that the Spike's, Wes Anderson's, PT's or Roman Coppola's of the world could never tap into, never get their hands on. An original with a unique voice and vision. I loved her then, just as I love her now. I was crushed by the fact she was married, just as I was crushed by the existence of "How They Get There," so original, so cute, and so brilliant. I told her everything, how I was useless, how my life had no meaning if I couldn't come up with a single idea, how I was never going to get anywhere by living intimidated by one man's work and how I feared my life was doomed to the confinement of those pink velvet crush walls of my cubicle. She listened. And she eased my pains, temporarily, with down cotton words and I went home that day feeling like someone really looked up to me as a creative entity; I napped on the encouragement. When I woke up, I watched the movie again and again I felt saddened. My girlfriend at the time just laughed at me, as she often did, and drank herself into a vomitous fit, as she often did, and ended messing around with my roommate's best friend, who ended up being, by chance, my co-worker's husband. The next morning, I vowed to never watch, "How They Get There" ever again. And I haven't to this day.

Call it what you will, but "How They Get There" served as a catalyst to how that woman I shared my pain with that day ended up becoming my live-in girlfriend and love of my life. Thanks, Spike. Two years strong. And not only is she a dream-come-true, but she's the secret behind all my fantasy. My muse. And she's incredibly encouraging.

10 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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