Elephant: A Film By Gus Van Sant [DVD] [2003]

Gus Van Sant's Palme d'Or-winning drama about a school shooting, Elephant, will probably be seen by more people on this DVD than saw it in the theater. The film is presented in two transfers. The standard full-frame transfer preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and is preferable to the widescreen image. The carefully constructed English soundtrack is rendered in DTS, Dolby Digital 5.1, and Dolby Digital Stereo. Spanish and French soundtracks are included as well. English, Spanish, and French subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include a 12-minute behind-the-scenes featurette that offers no insight into the making of the film, but does offer candid looks at the nonprofessional actors as they worked on the film. The original theatrical trailer, and a promotional spot for HBO Pictures rounds out this solid release.
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Special Features

  • "On the Set of Elephant, Rolling Through Time" (12 minutes)
  • Widescreen and full-screen presentation of the film
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Closed Captioned


Director Gus Van Sant returned to the low-key style of his early independent efforts with this semi-improvised exploration of how violence makes its way into a typical American high school. Eric (Eric Deulen) and Alex (Alex Frost) are two close friends who are students in a well-to-do suburb of Portland, OR. Eric and Alex are at once ordinary and misfits; while they seem to be confined to the edges of the clique-oriented social strata of high school, little about their behavior draws attention to itself. Or at least not during a typical school day; on their own time, the two boys are fascinated by Nazi iconography, enjoy violent video games, tentatively explore homoerotic desires, and coolly begin to make plans for an armed ambush of the school, drawing up working diagrams of the lunch room during study hall and buying rifles over the Internet. Drawing an expected degree of controversy, Elephant had its world premiere when it was screened in competition at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival, where it won both Best Director for Van Sant and the Golden Palm award. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Alex Frost
    Alex Frost - Alex
  • Image coming soon
    Eric Deulen - Eric
  • Image coming soon
    John Robinson - John
  • Elias McConnell
    Elias McConnell - Eli
  • Jordan Taylor
    Jordan Taylor - Jordan

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