The Work of Director Chris Cunningham
is the second volume in the Director's Works
DVD series. It contains a small but well-chosen selection of the music videos
and other unusual bits that artist Cunningham
has directed. The DVD also comes with a 52-page booklet with all sorts of somewhat unusual and disturbing artwork (including lots of girls with guys' faces, many of his intricate and complex hand-drawn art, and notes by Cunningham).
In general, Cunningham's style is definitely darker than Michel Gondry's and, although sometimes less-so, still darker than Jonze's material (admittedly, Jonze's films tend to be a lot darker than his music videos), and often is more than a little twisted. But nobody can claim that Cunningham isn't cinematic. Aside from all his videos being in widescreen and polished with gloss and sheen that major motion pictures get, they also definitely have the vision. Cunningham creates little worlds inside his music videos that feel like we're only getting to see the surface, the tip of the iceberg.
The videos on display here are incredible. Of course, there's the infamous Aphex Twin videos (and accompanying album artwork) Cunningham is responsible for, or even the (self...?) lesbian robotics of Björk's "All is Full of Love", a masterpiece both technically and artistically (Cunningham has said it is his best work). And yet there is still more. His video for "Come on My Selector" has its own story, its own structure, with some of Cunningham's science fiction manga-style visuals flashing by for only seconds just to get it all in, like a film reel in fast-forward. Similarly, "Afrika Shox" is a strange journey through an unfriendly city, following a strange, zombie-like character in search of something he never finds.
Cunningham's DVD, however, is the least stocked with features, leaving Jonze's disc at the top and Gondry's in-between. Cunningham's DVD features no encompassing documentary and no commentary to help flesh out the mind behind the camera, and that's definitely a shame. Even a short reel of interviews from the bands on the man would have helped. The Director's Works Box Set doesn't add anything either, although Cunningham along with everyone else participates on a Q&A session. For Cunningham's disc, however, the main bonus is a featurette on the making of "All is Full of Love", although the "Other Works" section includes a truly unsettling trailer for Cunningham's film Rubber Johnny...
The Work of Director Chris Cunningham (2003)
October 22, 2003
Color | Double-Sided | Dual-Layer | Available
in Region 1
) and Region 2
Making "All is Full of Love" featuring behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with Björk and Chris Cunningham