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School of Rock (2003) Amazon
Director: Richard Linklater

Truly once in a great age do you get a film like this. I love School of Rock. A big fan of Jack Black. So, doing a review of the extras on this DVD was an easy task. If you are not a fan of his then you’ll probably loath the extras as he becomes the focus of it all. But, I liked it.

    • Commentary by actor Jack Black and director Richard Linklater
    • Commentary by the kids from the film
    • “Lessons Learned”
    • Jack Black’s pitch to Led Zeppelin
    • Music video
    • MTV’s diary of Jack Black
    • Kids’ Video Diary from the Toronto Film Festival
    • Dewey Finn’s History of Rock Interactive Feature
    • Trailers
    • Weblinks

I think you can skip the running commentary by the kids. Boring for an adult, but maybe children will find it fun.

School of Rock Music Video. Great fun had by all.

Kids’ Video Diary is an 8 minute video of them at the Toronto Film Festival Premiere. These are cool kids (we’ll they are adults now) and they are being . . . well . . . kids.

Theatrical trailers – are theatrical trailers.

MTV’s diary of Jack Black is a pretty funny 16 minute extra sort of a day in the life piece. Done with the humor only Jack Black can muster. It takes you from morning Jack to ‘School of Rock’ rehearsal Jack, to rehearsal with ‘Tenacious-D‘ Jack, all the way to bedtime Jack. It’s sprinkled with bits and clips from the movie.

Jack Black’s pitch to Led Zeppelin starts off with an introduction by Jack. It was Linklater’s idea to have Jack make an appeal directly to Led Zeppelin (during rehearsals for the concert scene) to use the Immigrant Song in the movie. It worked.

“Lessons Learned” is a 30 minute piece featuring on-set interviews, behind the scenes videos, and rehearsals. The kids are great, Jack is funny as always. There are 9 lessons/chapters in this Extra:

Lesson #1 Have a Vision: Mike White talks about how and why he wrote School of Rock.
Lesson #2 Form a Band: Interviews with the kids and how they came to be in the movie. 
Lesson #3 Rehearse A Lot: Jim O’Rourke the music consultant talks about his part in working with Jack and the kids. There are some funny clips of the kids talking about working with Jack.
Lesson #4 Creating a Code Name: Hmmm, Jack “The White Tiger” – “I don’t get it'”
Lesson #5 Safety First: WTF! jack starts a fire on the set! Silliness abounds.
Lesson #6 Know What to Film: Linklater discusses the making of the film and working with Jack.
Lesson #7: Remember the Past: starts out with Miranda Cosgrove (Summer) interviewing Jack. 
Lesson #8: End with a Bang!: focuses on the “Battle of the Bands” concert scene.
Lesson #9: Choose a Title: “Why School of Rock” instead of “The School of Rock”?
 

Dewey Finn’s History of Rock Interactive Feature (requires installation of InterActual.
A requirement that I hate BTW). Once installed you have three options:

  1. Play DVD plays the movie as a digital file.
  2. The “Chalkboard of Rock” features 1 minute segments and an interactive Chalkboard:
    1. A video of Jack Black’s talking about his 5 favorite bands
    2. Linklater and Black talking about the “Chalkboard of Rock” 
    3. What is cool about this extra feature is the interactive “Chalkboard of Rock” which allows you to see the whole board and click on the individual music genres to reveal a more detailed history. Clicking on the individual musicians and bands gives you an even more detailed bio.

3. Web Site Archive allows you to explorer more goodies:

    1. Including “The Film” with text based info about the film.
    2. The Cast with small bios
    3. Production Notes with character development and background info on the cast
    4. More Behind the Scenes video clippets, Games and Downloads (like wallpapers et al).
    5. A gallery of thumbnail images from the movie.
    6. The Music lists the music in the film. But, it also has R.A.T. (Rock Aptitude Test) an interactive quiz on rock,  and Stage Dive Dewey which is a simple game where you get to make Dewey stage dive OR NOT.
I’m giving it 4 of 5 stars because the extras are mostly about having fun. Well done indeed, but not directed to those who want to learn more about the art of film making. I give it ★★★★☆

Victor

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