means caring so deeply for someone that you always want to share
your good fortune unless, you know, your good fortune is finding
a whole case of expired cough syrup behind the Walgreen's. That's
the sort of shit you keep to yourself. But being in love means
sharing your good fortune that isn't too good, and isn't too fucking
perverted to keep on the hush-hush. I love Mrs. Filthy and Mrs.
Filthy loves me. When I had the good fortune to find an extra
ten dollars in her wallet while she slept, I decided to share
and show my special Lane Bryant Lady a nice evening. I took her
to see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind at the discount
Elvis Cinema in Littleton, and even bought her popcorn and a Coke.
And I think
when she wakes up, she'll find a pleasant little surprise in the
bedroom. No, not my "American Idol" erotic fan fiction, even better:
a quarter in change from that ten bucks. Shit, I hope she doesn't
find my fan fiction. At least not until I figure out how to kill
off Paula Abdul before the big orgy.
Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a pretty fucking good movie,
surely the best movie playing for three bucks. Even with Jim Carrey
dragging it down with another mopey attempt at "serious acting".
Sure, I know the flick is about two weeks from hitting DVD or
pay-per-view, but it was sure as hell worth seeing.
It was even
worth the theater's fuckup in showtime listings that left us sitting
in the lobby for an hour watching the awful trailer for Sky
Captain and the World of Tomorrow, and when the projectionist
started The Prince and Me instead. You can't expect the
best when you get the cheapest. Or so I tell any prospective employer
when they interview me. I mean, shit, I'll take almost any job
at almost any pay, but I can guarantee you I'm gonna give you
what you pay for, and that's a guy whose happier pissing off the
loading dock than carrying heavy boxes. I salute the staff and
management of the Elvis Cinemas for having a similar attitude.
Mr. Manager, expect to see my application on your desk whenever
I get inspired to fill it out. It'll be the one with "Fuck Off"
scribbled across many sections.
Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Jim Carrey plays a square bachelor
of indeterminate age who has decided to undergo an extreme procedure
that will completely remove all memories of his free-spirited
girlfriend of two years (Kate Winslet). He makes this decision
after learning that she erased him first. After agreeing to the
procedure, Carrey reconsiders. He can't back out, so as the doctor's
assistants erase his brain, he unconsciously fights to salvage
memories of Winslet. He tries to hide her in memories where she
doesn't belong, like those from his childhood or a particularly
cringe-worthy masturbation recollection.
Like the staff
of the Elvis Cinema, the technicians charged with removing Carrey's
memories (Mark Ruffalo and Elijah Wood) are half-assed and easily
distracted. Ruffalo uses the time to screw girlfriend Kirsten
Dunst and Wood uses it to take Carrey's box of relationship mementoes
and use them to seduce a newly-single Winslet. When the memory
cleansing goes horribly awry, nobody is adequately prepared to
correct the errors.
Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is based on a simple concept,
the idea that memories can be erased, but it works so well because
screenwriter Charlie Kaufman doesn't beat us over the head with
it, like he did with Being John Malkovich and Adaptation.
In both of those, he had a good idea, but then he spent the entire
movie belaboring each possible consequence until he exhausted
me. In this movie, the idea of memory erasure is presented, but
the characters exist beyond it. The story and characters, not
just the idea, are what make the movie good.
this movie isn't easy. It isn't a straight narrative, but a constant
mixture of the present and flashbacks that are either true or
untrue, depending on how Carrey chooses to remember them. And
as Winslet is slowly erased from his memory, huge gaps appear.
It's very well done, but the shaky hand-held camera work and too-intentional
lo-fi production values are a bit annoying.
But the movie
left me wondering about a lot of things, illuminating some ideas
I wouldn't have had otherwise. Like, even if a relationship turns
sour, can't the memories still be good? I know that I still like
thinking about how I stole a hundred bucks from Jasmine, even
if she dumped me a week later. Do memories have integrity? When
they're corrupted and wrong are they worthless? We all remember
things differently, like I remember that I quit working at the
Amoco gas station and then crapped my pants, but they may remember
it as me crapping my pants at work and then being fired. Is the
recollection of all my coworkers worthless because it's inaccurate?
Apparently not to other potential employers. But which version
of events is valuable to me? And how can you completely eliminate
someone? Sure, you can collect all the mementos and burn them
in a bonfire. You can blot them out of your mind. But, what about
a certain temperature, or smell, or even a commonplace object
that makes you think of someone? Whenever I see drywall at the
Home Depot. I think of Flatface Marilyn. Man, she had a flat face.
You could have nailed a painting to it.
weakest points are its ending, which feels unnecessary and drawn
out, its subplots that conveniently and artificially provide the
story's resolution, and the fact that Kirsten Dunst and Kate Winslet
are both women with really great tits, yet they never take off
their tops and rub them against each other. Come on, Hollywood,
get your fucking act together. Who cares if it's inconsistent
with the plot? Candy Bottoms was perfectly willing to disrupt
the pace of The Maltese Hard-on to do it and I'd say it
made that flick even better.
sort of cool, though, is the way some really neat and subtle effects
are used within the illusion of lo-fi production. As Carrey's
memories are stripped from his mind, he has to pull Winslet from
the collapsing buildings and streets, and pull her into new ones.
He may go from a crumbling beach house to his mother's kitchen,
where he is once again a frightened four-year old, to looking
at her underwear under the covers in his apartment.
not a good actor, and all the money and fame in the world isn't
going to make him one. I couldn't help thinking how much better
the movie would be if it featured an actor capable of showing
unhappiness and loss. Carrey just thinks acting mopey is the same
as subtle. Personally, if I had all his fame and dough, I'd use
it to get Winslet and Dunst to mash their naked bodies. To me,
that's what wealth is for.
This is a
damn good movie, though. Cinema worth stealing ten bucks to see.
Four Fingers for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
Filthy || Want to tell Filthy