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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

****½ Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Drama.

Directed by: Michel Gondry.
Starring: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet.

This DVD was one of Dagny's Christmas presents, and we watched it with her while she was here, so over a month ago. She says it's the best movie she's ever seen. I wasn't quite as enthralled as she was, but I enjoyed it very much anyway.

When the movie opens, Joel (Jim Carrey) impulsively skips work and goes to the shore, where he meets a blue-haired woman, Clementine (Kate Winslet) and they hit it off. But then strange things start happening.

Turns out, Clementine has had boyfriend Joel erased from her mind. When he gets the letter from the memory-erasing clinic informing him of this, he decides to have her erased from his mind as well.

The movie jumps back and forward in time, which can be a little disorienting, though I think that was the point. Oddly enough, the story flows well that way, as things learned in one scene impact the meaning of the next regardless of where they fit in the chronology, and the story is much more effective than if it had been told in strict chronological order.

I suspect part of the difference between Dagny's "best movie ever" and my 4.5 stars is that I've read and watched a lot more science fiction than she has, and the concept of erasing memories isn't a new one for me. I did enjoy the details of the technique in this one, though I'd have liked to see it explored a little more thoroughly. For example, much was made of needing to find every single object connected with the person to be erased, but we never saw the consequences of missing something.

I was surprised, though, that she liked the romance of the movie--she's usually pretty cynical about such things. I, of course, loved the "true love conquers all" as well as the twists when things started going wrong.

Definitely one that'll end up in our DVD library as well.


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