I\'m Not ThereThere have been a lot of films and books about Bob Dylan over the years but this may be the most unique approach to depicting the famed artist’s intriguing life.

Writer/director Todd Haynes explores seven personalities of Dylan: Marcus Carl Franklin is Woody, an 11-year-old black boy riding the rails and playing 1930s folk standards for meals; Christian Bale portrays both Jack, the protest singer, and Pastor John, the evangelical minister Jack becomes; Heath Ledger is Robbie, an actor who played Jack in a biopic and later struggles with the burden of fame and the disintegration of his marriage; Cate Blanchett is Jude, the only character that is recognizably like Dylan; Richard Gere is Billy, a secluded rancher whose home is threatened by an encroaching highway; and Ben Whishaw is Arthur, a man being interrogated about why he stopped writing protest music.

Each of these incarnations is inspired by different elements of Dylan’s past, but none are direct representations of the real person.

Haynes’ commentary is like a dissection of each scene; it is very informative, sighting sources of inspiration including interviews, articles, other films, artwork and music. In addition, each personality is explained in individual screen caps. Between the two discs, there is a lot of reading – from feature articles to introductions to a Dylanography – which is interesting but unusual for a moving-picture medium. There is some crossover between the extras but each reveals a little more information about the concept, production and Dylan himself. The only thing missing is an interview with or comments from Dylan about the film.

Finally, as the first DVD release since Ledger’s death, it includes a short tribute of images to the actor.


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