Thanks heavens for Director’s commentaries

Whoever invented the DVD format probably had young children.

I reached this conclusion while watching “Finding Nemo” with my son for what must be the 10,000th time this week. I’ve reached the point where I can play the whole movie through in my head.

Not that it’s necessarily a bad thing. Before Finding Nemo it was episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba, and I know which one I’d rather watch.

But after about the 50th run through, even Pixar movies start to wear a bit thin. (Luckily we’re not back in the days of video tapes, or it really would be wearing thin by now.) So one day, out of sheer desperation, I switched to the Director’s commentary and waited for the tantrums to start.

But our son just kept on watching (“Just keep watching, just keep watching…”), oblivious to what they were talking about. And that’s when I realised what the DVD commentaries are for: to give parents a break.

Sure, it also lets them explain what happens “behind the scenes”, which I find really interesting. But the main purpose of those extra audio tracks is to save the sanity of the poor parents who have to watch the same movie (or sometimes even the same scene) over and over again.

(It may also be what those extra language tracks are for, but we already get indecipherable gibberish from our kids.)

So to those people who take the time to put commentaries on their DVS, thank you. You’ve helped me keep what little sanity I have left intact.

And the good news? It looks like our son is now interested in watching Wall-E.

{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Shaggygirl January 6, 2010, 12:02 pm

    My niece is obssessed with Dora the explorer and Mickey Mouse. She is a bit young for Nemo (not enough happening at the beginning) but she loves a Bug’s life. Everytime I go to visit I come home with some show’s song stuck in my head. 🙂

    • Bill Harper January 7, 2010, 4:17 pm

      Our son never got a chance to get hooked on Dora because we can’t stand it and always change the channel when it comes on.

      He used to be obsessed about Yo Gabba Gabba and In The Night Garden (with a little Hi-5 thrown in for good measure). But lately all he wants to watch is Finding Nemo.


  • Jen January 6, 2010, 12:30 pm

    I always wondered who watched the director’s commentary on DVDs. Knew someone had to… 😛

    • Bill Harper January 7, 2010, 4:25 pm

      Some commentaries are great even if you’re not a parent. It’s almost like having two movies for the price of one. But others are nothing more than the Director going on about how wonderful the movie is.

      If you want to find out what the commentaries are like on a particular DVD, check out Michael D’s Region 4 DVD Info Page.

  • Jen January 9, 2010, 12:42 pm

    I went to watch the director’s commentary of a Buffy episode once. It started with Joss Whedon saying, “We chose this girl because she was really good at looking scared.” After that it was a lot of dribble. I lasted two minutes.

    • Bill Harper January 10, 2010, 9:15 pm

      If you were ever a fan of “The Late Show“, the commentary track on the DVD is definitely worth a listen.


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