Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

This Week in Film: July 27th 2008

This week in film is a quiet one, as the heat of summer brings us yet another weekend of box-office dominance by a bat and a character from a playing card, some youthful nonsense from Will Ferrell and John C Reilly, and an overdue visit from some familiar, truth-seeking friends...

The X-Files: I Want to Believe has myself and some others quite disheartened and disinterested. Perhaps I would have been more excited ten years ago instead of the other film they delivered, back in the day? While I know many girls who had hero-worship for Scully, and many men who had a different kind of worship for her, it might be time to realize the truth. That it doesn't really matter anymore.

The free screens glisten this week at Yonge and Dundas Square with Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. The film is a surreal exploration through the memories of Clementine (Kate Winslet) as she has a procedure to erase ex-boyfriend Joel (Jim Carrey) from her mind. While we follow the former couple re-live their time together, we get to witness them realizing that it may be a different thing altogether to erase a person from ones heart.

The free film at Harbourfront this week offers something rather different. Instead of a deeply personal walk through memory lane, Sophia Coppola's The Virgin Suicides offers a slightly voyeuristic look at the lives of five overprotected sisters through the eyes of their neighbourhood admirers. Whichever film you choose, the movies start as soon as sun sets on Tuesday, so save your seats early!

Also on Tuesday, the Cinematheque Ontario is screening one of Shohei Imamura's more interesting films, Black Rain. (No, not THAT one.) The story revolves around Yasuko, a young woman who was infected by the 'black rain' that came from the sky after the bomb on Hiroshima, and her constant struggle with illness and failed attempts to make a marriage. The melodramatic story is reminiscent of an Ozu film, and can effectively be called one of Imamura's few 'tear-jerkers'. But that is not the end of Imamura, as the following day contains a screening of his 1964 classic, Intentions of Murder. In this film, Imamura rears his critical eye towards Japanese cultural expectations with a story about an unhappy woman who rejects the cards she was dealt in life, bucking sexist expectations of society after being raped by a burglar and engaging in a sadistic relationship with him. Controversial enough for you?

Image: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind from DVD Beaver

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