Two bumbling store clerks inadvertently erase the footage from all of the tapes in their video rental store. In order to keep the business running, they re-shoot every film in the store with their own camera, with a budget of zero dollars.
Following the death of his father from cancer, Stéphane - Mexican on his father's side, French on his mother's side - agrees, despite his less than proficient use of the French language, on his mother's request to move back to France from Mexico, she not only letting him live in her apartment in his old bedroom in the building she owns while she stays with her current boyfriend Gérard, a magician, but she having found him a job using his graphic art skills at a calendar shop. The job ends up not being quite as she had made it out to be - it more a dead end menial job - but Stéphane is still able to eke out a friendship of sorts with his new coworkers, especially Guy, the senior employee, a bully of a man-child who obsesses about sex and who becomes Stéphane's confidante. Concurrently, Stéphane strikes a friendship with his neighbor, Stéphanie, and her friend, Zoé, Stéphane and their friendship stemming out of some mistruths, including the two artistically inclined women not divulging ...Written by
There are several references in this movie to Michel Gondry's various music videos. Carrying the piano up the stairs is a reference to his video for Lucas' song "Lucas With the Lid Off" which features a very similar sequence. The dolls that Stéphane pulls out of the desk during one of the TV sequences are from his video for Oui Oui's song "Les Cailloux". The White Stripes's song in the soundtrack is a reference to the many videos Gondry has done for them. The giant hands in an early dream sequence are from Foo Fighters' "Everlong" video. Stéphane's bed and porch are similar to those from The Chemical Brothers' "Let Forever Be" video. See more »
¡Un, dos, tres, cuatro!
[Stéphane plays the drums, then the piano, then moves the cameras. "Stéphane TV"]
Hi, and welcome back to another episode of "Télévision Educative". Tonight, I'll show you how dreams are prepared. People think it's a very simple and easy process but it's a bit more complicated than that. As you can see, a very delicate combination of complex ingredients is the key. First, we put in some random thoughts. And then, we add a little bit of reminiscences of the day...
[...] See more »
The French DVD edition present a alternate version of the film made of B-roll footage. See more »
The plot summary says that the lead character is "held captive by people in his dreams." That's not so. Stephane just can't tell the difference between his dreams and reality. He is attracted to a girl and wants to move toward a relationship, but is hampered by this problem.
This film is not at all like "Waking Life" or "Eternal Sunshine." It's like Gondry's music videos, playful and eye-popping. There's no dark conflict, as implied by "held captive." I enjoyed it a lot, though because of the essential nature of the plot, it's a bit hard to follow, which diffused the impact of the story.
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