Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind: extra credit.

   ‘How happy is the vestal’s lot, the world forgetting by the world forgot, eternal sunshine of the spotless mind each pray’r accepted and each wish resigned’. ‘Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind’, A romantic film with a hint of science fiction was directed by Michel Gondry in 2004. This movie is about two simple people who are very different, the man, Joel Barish who is very quiet and boring and the girl, Clementine who is lively and spirited.

   These two characters meet on their way to Montauk in a cold morning and eventually the girl approaches to talk. They become friends and Joel starts to like her company. Time goes by and he surrounds his life in her dreams when he goes to meet Clementine on valentines and realizes that she does not remember him anymore.

   The story takes place in the realm of fantasy and science fiction because it uses technology to erase the memory of the girl. Joel gets a letter from the doctor who helps clementine to erase her memory and finds a lot of information in the process. He decides to do it to himself because he can not live without her.

   The movie flashes back to many incidents and dialogues that are significant to the change that takes place throughout and during the erasing of their memory. The most striking fact is that Joel struggles with the erasing and tries to hold onto Clementine so that the doctor can not erase her but all these go on in his sleep, inside his brain. The procedure only helps to remove painful memories but it keeps the patient’s basic tendencies alive which in most cases leads to repeat history. In the movie two cases, one of Joel and Clementine and another of the doctor himself and his receptionist shows that they repeated their love stories in a different way, without realizing that they have been together before. It leaves a hollow feeling in the people but they fail to distinguish amongst what happened and what can happen. When history repeats itself it can either be exactly the same things that happened or a new beginning.

   The movie relates on the scientific side in a very unusual and awestruck manner because it plays with the brain and its ability to do wonders. Forgetting a person and being destined to meet the same person again to possibly correct the past without the brain getting any hint at all. It is after all sunshine in the spotless mind, the brain being spotless of any past, acquaintances, and history of a person’s own life.

Sources:

Gondry Michel: eternal sunshine of the spotless mind (2004)

https://cinephilefix.com/2012/11/17/film-analysis-eternal-sunshine-of-the-spotless-mind/

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