I keep blundering this name: The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I picked it up at Best Buy this morning – and that’s a problem with me, buying movies on DVD, I have like, well, a lot – (I actually have to go buy another bookcase because the one I have is no longer big enough) – anyway, GREAT MOVIE!
It’s by Charlie Kaufman … y’know, Adaptation, Being John Malkovich, he’s the fucked up guy who got Nick Cage to play him. How cool is that? Anyway, his stories are usually somewhere between “The Twilight Zone” and “90210”, in that they’re either really weird, or really down to earth. Well, usually somewhere that’s not quite in the middle.
In “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” – and, y’know, it’s not like the movie is in chronological order but I’m going to try and give you a brief spoiler-free, uh, spoiler – a guy named Joel (Jim Carrey, no relation to John) bumps into his girlfriend at a bookstore the day after a huge arguement during which he calls her a slut and she wrecks his car against a fire hydrant. Well, the girlfriend Clementine (Kate Winslet with blue/yellow/green/purple hair depending on the scene) totally doesn’t recognize him! He’s bummed out until he finds out that dear old Clementine was SO distraught by their fight that she had her memory of him … ERASED!
Well, he’s more than a little pissed off, and has the same thing done to him – memories of Clem? Gone! Gone! Except, as they’re erasing his memories of her – and him with no way to communicate with ‘them’ that’s-a-doin’ the erasin’ – he decides, “Wait! I love her! I don’t want to lose these memories!” And therein begins a wild chase as he tries to hide memories of her in places of brain where the “colander as a brain sucker” can’t locate and destroy them! All the while, the machine is on auto-pilot, and the tech and his girlfriend are eating his food, drinking his beer, smoking weed, and having sex on his bed.
It gets a bit more complicated than that, and an act of seeming charity by Kristen Dunst’s heartbroken receptionist almost destroys the happy ending …
… wait, there is no happy ending, this is a Charlie Kaufman script. Or is there? I don’t know, I’m still confused by it. Anyway, worth the $4 to rent it, or the $20 to buy it. It’s on the shelf next to “Adaptation.” Well, no, it isn’t, but that’s because “Adaptation” is on the shelf but “Sunset” is on top of the stack next to the shelf because I don’t have any more room for DVDs!