Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Slate's David Edelstein calls Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind the best movie he's seen in a decade. While that may be debatable, Sunshine is definitely one of the best movies of this year. Charlie Kauffman's wondrous screenplay is romantic and literally cerebral, in that it takes place entirely inside it's protagonist's head.

Readers all over are divided on what Eternal is really about. On one hand, it's about second chances, on the other, about the inevitability of fate. (Joel and Clementine are fated to meet, just as Howard and his receptonist are doomed to their own unequal relationship). It's also about love, the way that things about loved ones that seem so lovable at first get so maddenning later. And then, more than anything else, the movie is about memories. As his memories of Clementine are being erased, Joel realizes how precious they are. (An interesting article in Slatetalks about the neurophysical aspect.)

The movie is absolutely rivetting, laceratingly funny in parts and sometimes (well, thrice, to be precise) heartbreakingly moving. In marvellously poignant moment, the last memory of Clementine that is erased is actually the first, the one where they met. Winslet and Carrey are breathtaking here; savoring their first meeting and their ultimate parting at the same time in the movie's beautiful tour de force. Amazing!!!

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