Archive for June 30th, 2010

by Allan Fish

(USA 2004 108m) DVD1/2

O my darlin’, o my darlin’…

p  Steve Golin, Anthony Bregman  d  Michel Gondry  w  Charlie Kaufman  ph  Ellen Kuras  ed  Valdis Oskarsdottir  m  Jon Brion  art  Dan Leigh  cos  Melissa Toth

Jim Carrey (Joel Barish), Kate Winslet (Clementine Kruczynski), Kirsten Dunst (Mary Svevo), Mark Ruffalo (Stan), Elijah Wood (Patrick), Tom Wilkinson (Dr Howard Mierzwiak), Jane Adams (Carrie), David Cross (Rob),

If asked to name the most flat out inventive film of 1999, anyone who did not pick Being John Malkovich just cannot have seen it.  The same might be said of Adaptation in 2002, another deliciously clever premise from cult author Charlie Kaufman, the one writer in movies today who could prove himself one of the greats in that capacity alone.  Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind was lumbered with a title that hardly makes one rush to the box office, and hence it only performed moderately in takings, and like Kaufman’s earlier work, it is undoubtedly an acquired taste.  For those willing to take the plunge, however, it’s the one essential romantic comedy of the modern cinema; a romantic film for anti-romantics, one for the age of sci-fi.

            Joel Barish makes a decision not to go into work one morning and goes impulsively to Montauk, where he meets a young woman of very eccentric dress and hair sense called Clementine.  Just at the point where they are about to get together, however, the narrative switches back in time and we find Joel devastated to find that his girlfriend, the very same Clementine, has not only dumped him but gone to a specialist clinic to literally have him removed from her mind.  Hurt and distressed by this, Joel goes off to have the procedure done himself, only for him to change his mind during the procedure and try and keep Clementine’s memory sacred. (more…)

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