Film I love that we live in a decade when something like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind isn't just made but is also a major film release. Apart from having to go to a box office and say that title in order to order a ticket, its where that ticket is being sold - at a large multiplex near you. On top of 21 Grams, its as though Hollywood, looking back at the many years of film history, through German Existentialism, French New Wave and the Easy Riders of the sixties, feels some kind of continued obligation to present something intelligent and experimental in amongst its more traditional fare. Which is a great, great thing.

Not that everything within is entirely original. A woman takes the rather rash decision to buy in process in which she has all of the memories of her boyfriend wiped from her mind and in pain and spite he does the same. Deliberate memory loss is a genre stock-in trade - and the appearance of someone in their own head or someone elses rationalizing what is happening is something which has turned up in almost every tv show from Star Trek to Buffy -- hell even the Jennifer Lopez clunker The Cell hung on that very idea. But here it's about execution. And whereas in most other cases its been subservient to some greater plot-arc or subplot, here they're asking the rather bigger questions of why memories are important and how they aid in making us who we are and also how important the people we've met and our collective experiences further our understanding of ourselves.

The writer, Charlie Kauffman is probably one of the most exciting writers we have available. Like Rob Shearman, he takes what are relatively unique characters and places them within an extra-ordinary situation, and makes us care for them as they illuminate our own failings. The problem is that I can't imagine a conventional director tackling the material. So it's a good job that Michael Gondry was available. Together with photographer Ellen Kuras (of Personal Velocity) many fantastic images are created - from the bed on the beach to the bookshop in which all the paperbacks suddenly reverse themselves on the shelves, and sets disappearing along with the guys memory.

Its that ability to produce the credible within the incredible which has attracts such acting talent, and impressively makes them want to do such extraordinarily good work. This is the Jim Carrey film that its OK to like if you usually hate his stupid mugging face. Kate Winslet proves yet again that she's not all about corsets, producing a perfect extrapolation of the Holly Golightly-style fabulous person we all know (when are they going to pass a law which says that everyone should see every film she's in?) Tom Wilkinson and Kirsten Dunst are, well, Tom Wilkinson and Kirsten Dunst, it's interesting to see what Elijah Wood has been doing during The Rings and David Cross continues to be 'that guy'. Not a poor performance amongst them.

The problem is that despite all that its not a film for everyone. If you're looking for some something linear yet enjoyable you might not have the best time. But if Fight Club crossed with Vanilla Sky with a dash of Waking Life sounds like a good thing to you, you're going to love it.

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