Thursday, June 21, 2007

June 21st Log

2007, Gabor Csupo, United States
1st Viewing, DVD

With a mind like yours wide open, you could create a whole new world.” This line comes over an hour into the film, but it is one that defines it. From the perspective of an open imagination, a whole new world can be created and thus sets the stage for this wonderfully magical film of fantasy and reality and how one another can be inspired from each other. The context of Bridge to Terabithia is something richer then fantasy and reality and it is here that the film reaches great heights of imagination and emotional attachment. You feel for these characters and you feel the sense of wonder of the film. Holding it together is terrific performances from the three young actors: Josh Hutcherson, Bailee Madison, and AnnaSophia Robb, who has proven her young talent in films like Because of Winn Dixie and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Also Zooey Deschanel provides a lovely supporting role as the charming school music teacher. It easy to understand why Jesse has a crush on her, and like just about anything Deschanel has been in you are always left wanting to see more of her. This is a great family film. I think first time feature filmmaker Gabor Csupo could have gone even more inspiring with the visuals of the film, but otherwise this delivers in every aspect. Highly recommended to all audiences.

2004, Michel Gondry, United States
Repeat Viewing, HBO

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is one of those films that’s so good it leaves me speechless. Absolutely lovely! Heartbreakingly sad, yet wonderfully romantic and hopeful…and truly original. It’s almost like a great modern-day French New Wave film that’s never been made before (as obvious influences from Jean-Luc Godard or Alain Resnais are evident)! Screenwriter Charlie Kaufman has created some brilliant films but this is undoubtedly his finest. Director Michael Gondry’s hyper-visual style and the all fantastic performances (particularly by Kate Winslet, who is incredible) are what give Kaufman’s script it’s core, strength, and beauty. Gondry (who also wrote the story) perfectly captures the atmosphere through the use of fades, shifts of focus and handheld camera. What makes this film so special is the small little joyous details throughout (the irony of the young couple dancing over Joel as his love is being erased from his memories, Clementine’s hair color change, each representing a stage in their relationship, "I'm making a birdhouse", etc, etc). There are so many endless depths and examinations to this film. However, ultimately I believe this a film of human emotions and feelings. Eternal Sunshine shows how we are the collection of our memories, and without them, we may no longer be ourselves (even if we don’t realize it)! Discovering this is difficult at first for Joel and Clementine, however their deep human emotions and feelings can’t escape them, and leads them back to what they tried to forget. Will they last? Maybe, maybe not. Or maybe it’s simply the “journey” that’s most irresistible. While the ending is left open for interpretation it couldn’t be more perfect. This an absolute joyous film that leaves such a warm feeling and big smile of my face just thinking about!!! It's like suddenly everything is lovely and bright and happy and hopeful. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is without a doubt among my all-time favorite films. Not even Lacuna Inc has enough power or technology to erase this film from my memories!! “Enjoy it


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