Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

U.S., 2004,108 min, 35mm, Dir. Michel Gondry, Rated R, Focus Features


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Michel Gondry and Charlie Kaufman’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is as perfect a Valentine’s Day film as you can get. In a world where a procedure exists to erase memories selectively, Joel (Jim Carrey) is stunned to discover that his girlfriend, Clementine (Kate Winslet), has had their tumultuous relationship removed from her mind. Out of desperation, he contacts the inventor of the process, Dr. Howard Mierzwiak (Tom Wilkinson), to get the same treatment. But as his memories of Clementine begin to fade, Joel suddenly realizes how much he still loves her. Taking the will they/won’t they conflict to its extreme, the film is a funny yet poignant examination of what it means to love another person. Its highly praised dream-like narrative won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay and turned the structure of the romantic comedy on its head completely.