Michel Gondry was fascinated with Noam Chomsky and his philosophies. So, he sat down a few times and talked to him, and then created animations to help explain what was being said. It was hypnotising and interesting and I was just captivated, although I found it a bit long. I would like to watch it again, perhaps in a couple of sittings, but I feel like it might set in a bit more.
Ah, Michel Gondry, do you need a storyline anymore, or are you just up for the beauty and mystery that you can create in a film? This is a pretty straightforward story – Colin (Romain Duris) longs for love when he realises that both his friends, lawyer and chef Nicolas (Omar Sly) and philosopher Chick (Gad Elmaleh) are partnered up. He meets Chloe(Audrey Tautou) and they quickly pair up. But shortly after they marry, she ends up with a water-lily in her lung her health deteriorates.
Yup, nuts. I loved it for its beauty, but hated it for its story- or lack thereof. Still, I shall continue to watch Michel Gondry’s films hoping to capture a moment the perfection I found in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
One of my favourite ever films is Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I love the insanity of it, the pain, the romance and the magnificent cinematography. But I’ll write on that another time. The Science of Sleep is by the same director, Michel Gondry, and has a lot of similarities. Although where Eternal Sunshine is on memories, this is on dreams. Now, I’m predicting what you’re thinking – dreams in films are a tedious cop-out that leaves the audience unimpressed. Not when the director is Michel Gondry.
Stephane (Gael Garcia Bernal) has returned to Paris and to his (mostly absent) mother after his father’s death. He takes a job in a calendar company with a group of odd misfits but dreams of something more creative. After an accident with the moving of a piano, he meets his neighbour Stephanie (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and her friend Zoe (Emma de Caunes). Stephanie and Stephane both inhabit a mysterious artistic world. In the case of Stephane, not only does he live much of his life in dreams, but his dreams are somewhat real. Also, he invents amazing things, like a time machine that only works for one second increments, or 3D glasses that make 2D images come to life. He wants to pursue Stephanie, but his dreams get in the way.
It is beautiful, like watching any of Gondry’s music videos, however I started to grow tired of the story. There was so much information being thrown at me that by the end, I was exhausted. The film moved between French and English (and occasionally Spanish) which beautifully portrayed Stephane’s struggle with returning to Paris. I would still recommend it to anyone who loves beautiful films.