Connect with us
Kim's Video
Image Courtesy of Sundance

Film

Kim’s Video Weaves Dreams and Reality Together in Its Love for Movies

Ashley Sabin and David Redmon’s latest experimental documentary shines the spotlight on one of New York City’s most beloved film collections – and what exactly happened to all those movies after it closed.

Sundance 2023: Kim’s Video Review

For many cinephiles in the ‘80s and ‘90s, video stores provided a different kind of education. New perspectives and worlds opened up for the eager filmgoer and it was all available to bring home. The disappearance of brick-and-mortar stores to the rise of streaming and digital marketplaces has since rendered physical media almost exclusive to the realm of collectors and cinephiles. The answer to why in 2008, locations like Kim’s Video in New York shuttered their doors wasn’t exactly a surprise. However, where do all those movies go when they no longer have a purpose? Ashley Sabin and David Redmon’s focused gaze in Kim’s Video grafts one video store’s wild story to the personal connection film has to its filmmakers. In the process, it provides an example of why preservation and access are vital components to keeping an art form alive.

There’s an obsessive quality to Kim’s Video where movies are immediately put onto a pedestal by Redmon, who narrates, shoots, and becomes a part of the story of Kim’s Video more than any of its other loyal customers. What begins as a love letter to a place where anybody with a membership could access over 55,000 movies, Redmon’s seemingly obvious question of “what happened to Kim’s Video?” becomes far more challenging to answer and even harder to accept. The answer is that the internet ultimately killed Kim’s Video, much like other video stores and arcades – and is currently forcing cinemas to fight for survival.

Kim's Video
Image Courtesy of Sundance

However, what makes Kim’s Video fascinating is that obsessive quality that doesn’t let a general answer like “streaming” end the conversation. Redmon and Sabin’s film begins by establishing the lens through which Redmon views life. His passion for cinema informs his thought process, and throughout Kim’s Video, he points out the similarities between reality and cinema. The recognition that a story can’t just end so definitively is how Kim’s Video quickly turns from an ode to video stores to a twisting narrative. It follows the expansive collection of films from one of New York City’s most revered movie archives to its new home in Salemi, Sicily. It is from there that things only feel more and more like a dream.

Very much an active participant in the events that transpire after arriving in Italy, Kim’s Video always tries to move the needle forward in its reverence for the store itself. The contract which brings the films to Salemi opens up multiple avenues for the filmmakers to explore, each with varying degrees of disbelief as the films remain locked away in a warehouse. At the same time, Redmon digs deeper into narrative threads until they return to Kim’s Video’s fate. It’s through sheer determination that Redmon manages to push against blind acceptance of the collection’s destination that he creates a clearer picture of a grim situation.

Kim's Video
Image Courtesy of Sundance

Where Kim’s Video goes from there is best left discovered if you don’t already know the story, and it is more than just a happy or sad ending. It’s a final act that makes you wonder if the filmmakers are daring or just too engulfed in the subject matter to think straight. Combined with the rational and very enigmatic founder of Kim’s Video, Yongman Kim proving to have a more level-headed love for film, it makes Redmon seem obsessive to a hazardous degree. It results in a fascinating story and movie, but there were many moments when it seemed like everything was going to fall apart because of a refusal to accept reality.

Redmon and Sabin could have left Kim’s Video as nothing more than a trip down memory lane. At first, it seems it might be that. But as it quickly emerges that not everything is black-and-white, Redmon and Sabin craft a documentary that weaves fiction and non-fiction to blur those lines so that reality itself feels like a dream. As a result, Kim’s Video moves from personal attachment to an unyielding desire for justice. The story crafted along the way isn’t just one that will resonate with cinephiles but might make others take an interest in preserving the past.

The 2023 Sundance Film Festival takes place from January 19th to 29thFind all our coverage here.

Written By

Chris is a graduate of Communications from Simon Fraser University and resides in Victoria, British Columbia. Given a pint, he will talk for days about action films, video games, and the works of John Carpenter.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Facebook

Trending

Latto Pulled Up To Angel Reese’s WNBA Debut In Style

Celebrity

Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande constitute the global viewers’ attention “All About the Wicked” movie cast.

Celebrity

Who Is Christopher Lloyd’s Wife? For How Long Has He Married Lisa?

Celebrity

Who Is Kevin Costner’s Ex-Wife? Has He Finalized His Divorce with Christine Baumgartner?

Celebrity

Susan Buckner Cause of Death: Sandy’s Cheerleading Friend Patty Simcox dies at 72!

Celebrity

Who Is Adele’s Boyfriend? Explore the Renowned American Singer’s Love Life!

Celebrity

Thomas Rhett and Lauren Akins’ Relationship Timeline: How Did They First Meet?

Celebrity

Who is Chris Pratt’s Wife? Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger’s Dating History!

Celebrity

David Copperfield Sexual Accusation Unveiled: Women in Alleged Sexual Abuse Narrate Ordeal!

Celebrity

Harrison Butker Controversial Graduation Speech: What Did He Say?

Celebrity

Antonio Brown’s net worth: Is he really worth -$3 million?

Culture

Cardi B Clarifies Why She Referred to Her Met Gala Dress Designer as ‘Asian’ Instead of His Name

Celebrity

Robert De Niro’s 7 Children: Everything to Know

Celebrity

DJ Akademiks’ Instagram Account Mysteriously Disappears, Fans Craft Their Theories As To Why

Celebrity

Three Men Shot During The Production Of A Lil Baby Music Video

Celebrity

Who Is Jordana Brewster’s Husband? Relationship Timeline Explored!

Celebrity

Connect