Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

This film is hard to describe because, unlike the vast majority of movies, it in no way sucks. Yes, even though it stars Jim Carrey, it fails completely to be awful. In fact, with Kate Winslet’s startlingly complex performance, the extreme creativity of director Michael Gondry and a script by Charlie Kaufman of Adaptation and Being John Malkovich fame, this really couldn’t be a better film if it was injected straight into the pleasure center of the brain. Carrey plays Joel Barrish, a man whose girlfriend (Kate Winslet) has left him. Worse, she’s gone to Lacuna Incorporated, a brain modification company, and had Joel erased from her memory. This leads to a series of unseemly encounters in and around Joel’s cerebral cortex. Strange, sad, funny, and then sad again, this weird science fiction film may be the most realistic romance movie ever made. In fact, it has an ending that is less happy and more true than just about any I’ve seen. But you should see it anyway: a little honesty never hurt anyone who didn’t hold elected office.

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