Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Critique Essay

The movie “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” is the story of a guy, Joel, who discovers that his long-time girlfriend, Clementine, has undergone a psychiatrist’s experimental procedure in which all of her memory of Joel is removed, after the couple has tried for years to get their relationship working right. Frustrated by the idea of still being in love with a woman who doesn’t remember their time together, Joel agrees to do the procedure also, to erase his memories of Clementine.
The movie takes place mostly in Joel’s mind, which follow his memories of Clementine backwards in time as each recent memory is replaced, and the process then goes on to the previous one and then erased. Once the process starts, Joel realizes he doesn’t really want to forget Clementine, so he starts sneaking her away into parts of his memory where she don’t belong that changes other things about his memories also. “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” is dealing with the ideas of ownership, truth, time, and presence.
For example ownership is represented of having the memory of the one person, truth is shown through spirituality, time is shown by the existence of their memories, and presence is brought out through Joel’s mind of Clementine. The character who is most present in their life is Clementine because she is being present, occurring, and existing in Joel’s mind. The character that is most aware of time is Joel because of the existence and events of Clementine.

The central theme of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” is unavoidable romance, but with a difference. The love itself, when it’s finally won, isn’t appealing. It’s not even likely to last, but being in love is the only way these characters feel alive and no void in their brains can get over that. The statement of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless mind” is time because of the events in the past, present, an future of Joel and Clementine’s memories, but also willingness to skip across the memories of forgetting.

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