Some movies stay with you long after they’re over. Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind is one of them.
I’ve watched and re-watched this weirdly wonderful 2004 cult classic more times than I can count. It defies genre, mashing up drama and fantasy and sci-fi (but don’t believe anyone who calls it a romantic comedy–this is no rom com).
Joel (Jim Carrey, in one of his best roles) decides to have his memories of a bad relationship erased after he finds out that his ex Clementine (Kate Winslet, in one of hers) has done the same. But once the procedure is underway, he realizes he doesn’t want to go through with it.
What follows is a mad dash through Joel’s mind as he revisits all his memories–good and bad–of their relationship.
They’re wacky and sweet when they first hit it off. But when things begin to disintegrate, they are horrible to each other, and those scenes are painful to watch.
Eternal Sunshine is rough and gritty (and earns it’s R rating–be warned), and yet it carries one of the most profoundly hopeful endings about love I’ve ever seen.
It also features a stellar supporting cast. Elijah Wood earns special mention for his creepy portrayal of the guy from the memory lab who falls for Clementine and tries to use Joel’s lines to steal her away.
This film is sad and joyful, wacky and heartbreaking. And that title? It’s from Alexander Pope’s Eloisa to Abelard.
How happy is the blameless vestal’s lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray’r accepted, and each wish resign’d;
Seen it? Tell us what you loved and hated in comments.
***** ***** *****
This is the tenth post in a series, 31 Days of Cult Classics. You can click here to see a list of all the posts, updated everyday in the month of October.