Exit Through the Gift Shop
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Top Customer Reviews
That's right, for me, "Exit Through The Gift Shop" works as a comedy. I was entertained by the more conventional first half, but I was delighted by the ridiculous turn of events for the finale! The film follows Thierry Guetta, an amateur documentarian that becomes obsessed by the world of street art. With a camera constantly at the ready, Guetta insinuates himself into this underground community. He's an oddball, to be sure, traveling the globe and leaving his family to endlessly film footage without ever constructing a final product. When he teams up with one of Britain's most elusive talents (Banksy), the two become virtually inseparable.Read more ›
The movie is divided pretty fairly into three equally entertaining sections. The first third introduces the protagonist, Thierry, and sets the background for his obsession with street artists. The middle portion of the movie introduces Banksy and follows the growth of his relationship with Thierry. The final act features Thierry almost exclusively, and while I was sure I knew where the film was going to end up, I found myself anxiously awaiting confirmation (incidentally, I couldn't have been more wrong).
My favorite thing about this excellent film is the conversations it begets once the credits have rolled. Questions are raised about each of the film's featured artists and the art world in general that may not have clear answers, but are entertaining to discuss nonetheless. I appreciated that the film was willing to acknowledge that it didn't have the answers either, especially considering how difficult it must have been to not pretend otherwise.
My wife and I may not agree about exactly what happened at the end of the film or why, but I think we can both agree on one thing after viewing: Banksy is much, much more talented than either of us originally thought (and we thought pretty highly of him before).
"Exit through the Gift Shop" is a fascinating look into the world of street art and those who pursue this new form, eschewing money and personal fame for the chance to make their mark and give the finger to the establishment at the same time. Many of these artists are truly amazing, and the efforts they go to in pursuit of venues and canvases are equally amazing. In the process, though, the public interest has turned those such as the enigmatic Banksy into sellable properties. Banksy, while making political statements on the West Bank wall and other places, decides to cash in on the growing fame and does a huge show in L.A. that drew Hollywood's brightest stars. In so doing, he makes street art into something marketable on a grand scale. Was this his intention? We don't know. Conveniently, he never lets us know how much he made.
He does, however, use this film to set up the French filmmaker Thierry as
an artist to be mocked. Thierry, good at documenting but not good at putting together a cohesive film, decides to put on a show of his in L.A. By some miracle, he pulls it off, flirting with financial ruin to make it happen, and ends up making a lot of money and a new name for himself as Mr. Brainwash. Yes, his art is derivative, and no, he did not pay his dues. He becomes a slightly pathetic, slightly comedic figure in all of this. But Banksy also cashes in, while not playing as honestly by letting us in on the details of his prestige and income in the art world. He also, glaringly, fails to explain how some of these artists travel the world.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A great movie that gives insight into the underground world of street art. Really enjoyed watching this instead of paying attention in class. Read morePublished 1 day ago by Corbin
A very interesting and inciteful lool into the world of street art and pop art appreciation, not to mention the power of modern marketing.Published 18 days ago by SpyroM