Michel Gondry is a director known for his whimsy and magical imagination. Charlie Kaufman is a screenwriter known for his pessimism and insane originality. When the two combined their cinematic powers in 2004, they created an all-time great romance that was brave enough to take a long, hard look at the ugly side of love and how relationships actually work.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind stars Jim Carrey as Joel Barish, a lonely, shy man who meets an outgoing woman named Clementine (Kate Winslet). After their relationship takes a rocky turn, Clementine undergoes a process to wipe the memories of Joel from her mind. Hurt, Joel undergoes the same procedure, but as the technicians erase his memories of Clementine, Joel changes his mind and decides to fight back, desperately stashing memories of his ex-girlfriend away in his subconscious.
Using a shocking amount of practical effects, this inventive romance skips through time and dances in and out of memories, as Joel re-lives both the happy and horrible moments of his relationship, all while discovering the cause of the breakup. Kaufman's clever sci-fi script won an Academy Award, and with Gondry at the helm, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind boldly explores what happens when the fresh, new shine wears off a romance, and the couple is left dealing with each others' faults and flaws. The film doesn't ignore the pain and pitfalls of making a relationship work, and by examining the different stages of romance, this is a movie that changes and grows with each and every viewing.