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Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - Film Review

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Published July 31st 2013

Who would not attest to love being mankind's favourite theme?

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), a movie with such a poetic name, derived upon Alexander Pope's beautiful poetry 'Eloisa to Abelard', wherein two lovers retain their love despite experiencing separation arising from secular prejudice.

Eloisa Abelard

However, this love story begins as it ends; a palindrome of events mirrored initially and finally with the acquaintance of the two protagonists. There are inconsolable conflicts, followed by intrigue as the story unfolds on itself. Perhaps the underlying difference amongst all the similarities is the clash in characters; Joel Barish (Jim Carrey), the awkward, conservative yet empathetic being and Clementine Kruczynski (Kate Winslet), the impulsive, whimsical extrovert, allowing Joel to free himself from his own inhibitions. It highlights their struggles as he does not wish to forget their fond memories; whereas, she finally reunites with him despite the erasure of memories.

I started out categorising this movie as science fiction, for technology plays a major role in projecting the inner workings of the dream realm. The memory erasing machine provides the viewer with an adventure into Joel's psyche and his perspective of environments and bygones. A sense of comical nature is derived from his awareness within his own operation and a sort of self narrating process of expositions ensues. He soon realises that if he is able to recognise the memories being deleted, why not hide them within other more secluded ones. It is a race between the human psyche and the automated prerogative of 'auto-pilot'.

Furthermore, something pre-existing cannot be simply and forcefully erased, especially when said commodity happens to love - Love comes from the sunshine of one's mind, 'perhaps the corona radiata', as a neurologist would say. Love is heavily based on trust, security and integrity. As long as love existed, it will always have an existence.

This is what the director (Michel Gondry) highlights as the meaning of love and is seen pervasively throughout the movie, including Mary (Kirsten Dunst)'s love to Dr. Howard Mierzwiak (Tom Wilkinson). She reads a poem to Howard while the machine is operating on Joel, with the intention of presenting herself as somewhat intellectual towards Howard. Her character is the one who poignantly defines the title of the movie that love is the 'eternal sunshine of the spotless mind'.

Love is willingness for possession, willingness for eternity and willingness for growth. Between these two lovers, they did not wish to discontinue their affections, so their love continued and this intangible string always linked them together in their affinity towards one another.

Thus Love is such a bond that remains constant amongst the entire internal and external environment. Love will be preserved by the maintenance of the relationship.

Love is a promise. Love is an asset. Love will grow as the attachment between two bodies strengthens. Everything changes with human behaviour. Love always waits to give you more.
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Where: DVD / Blu-ray
Your Comment
I love this movie so much. I can remember being absolutely blown away by Jim Carey when it first came out.
by Carly Ogborne (score: 3|4626) 1620 days ago
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