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"ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND"
(2004) (Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Heavy *None Heavy Minor None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Moderate None Minor None Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Minor None Moderate Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: In the middle of having his girlfriend permanently erased from his memory, following her doing the same to him, a man has a change of heart and tries to hide within his memories from those hired to erase them.
PLOT:
Joel Barish (JIM CARREY) and Clementine Kruczynski (KATE WINSLET) are a classic example of opposites being attracted to one another. He's reserved and pensive, while she's an outgoing and impulsive free spirit. Despite some good times together, it isn't surprising when they begin to have problems with their relationship.

Little did Joel know, however, how far Clementine would go to end it. With the help of Dr. Howard Mierzwiak (TOM WILKINSON) and his team at Lacuna, she's set out to have Joel completely and permanently erased from her memories.

When Joel realizes what she's done, he makes an appointment with Lacuna receptionist Mary (KIRSTEN DUNST) and then awaits technicians Patrick (ELIJAH WOOD) and Stan (MARK RUFFALO) to work their memory magic and have Clementine removed from his.

In the middle of the process, however, Joel realizes he's again enjoying his time with Clementine - if only in his memories - and wants to stop it. Yet, since he's unconscious, his only recourse is to flee within his own head - accompanied by a now sentient, memory-based version of Clementine - and try to avoid the erasure team that's coming after the two of them.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of anyone in the cast or the imaginative work of screenwriter Charlie Kaufman, they just might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For language, some drug and sexual content.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • JIM CARREY plays a guy who changes his mind about having the memories of his girlfriend erased (after she's done that first) during the process and retreats inside his own head and other memories. He uses strong profanity and has sex with Clementine.
  • KATE WINSLET plays a somewhat neurotic and needy young woman who has Joel erased from her memories but then exists inside his. During both "realities," she uses strong profanity, drinks and has sex with Joel.
  • ELIJAH WOOD plays one of the Lacuna memory technicians who uses Joel's memories in hopes of turning Clementine into his girlfriend.
  • MARK RUFFALO plays his coworker who's sweet on Mary (with whom he apparently has sex and shares a joint while on the job) and doesn't work as stringently as he should in erasing Joel's memories. He uses strong profanity.
  • KIRSTEN DUNST plays the Lacuna receptionist who apparently has sex with Stan and shares a joint with him. We learn she had a fling with a married man in the past.
  • TOM WILKINSON plays the Lacuna chief who assesses the patients for their memory erasing. When Joel's goes bad, he steps in to help (we also learn he had an affair in the past).
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a quick look at the content found in this R-rated dramedy. Profanity consists of at least 29 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are uttered. Sexually explicit dialogue is present, some women are seen in scanty/revealing attire, sex is implied, some groping occurs, and a man (representing a boy/teen) masturbates (we see movement) while looking at a pornographic drawing.

    Several characters smoke pot and appear high, while another offers a joint to others and they and others drink and a few briefly smoke. Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, some imitative behavior is present, and some brief violence against an animal occurs (although the bird already appears dead).

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Clementine pours some liquor into her coffee (under the table).
  • Clementine asks Joel if he wants a drink and says that she has lots. The two then have drinks and she tells him to drink up as it will make "the whole seduction part less repugnant" (and then adds that she's kidding).
  • A friend of Joel's asks, "Anybody want a joint?"
  • When Joel learns that the memory erasing is a form of brain damage, Dr. Mierzwiak equates it to being on par with a night of heavy drinking.
  • Joel somewhat jokingly states that Clementine is drunk (she appears tipsy) and later calls her a wino.
  • Patrick and Stan have beer.
  • We hear that Clementine had been drunk driving.
  • Mary finds and then pours liquor for herself and Stan.
  • Joel and Clementine have beer and we hear Joel's thoughts, "She's gonna be drunk and stupid now."
  • Mary and Stan share a joint and the two get high from that. Later, she keeps repeating how "stoned" she is.
  • With Clementine appearing as a family friend within a memory, we hear Joel's mother asking her if she'd drink a cocktail at this hour.
  • Clementine holds a bottle of liquor at a drive-in.
  • Clementine announces she's going to look for the liquor cabinet in a stranger's house and then asks Joel if he's okay with wine after she only finds that.
  • Some background dialogue is heard about pot balancing out the liquor that's been consumed.
  • Joel asks Clementine if she wants a drink and then hands her a glass of whiskey.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None, but a bit of crude humor involves a comment made regarding something about people coming out of a person's butt (or something like that).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Joel discovers that someone has smashed part of his car.
  • Joel tosses an audio cassette out a window (littering).
  • Clementine appears to blow off Joel (they're a couple) and even kisses Patrick (but there's more occurring here than it appears, as she truly doesn't know who Joel is since she had him erased from her memory).
  • Clementine calls Joel a "faggot."
  • Patrick admits that he stole a pair of Clementine's panties.
  • Stan drinks, smokes a joint and has sex with Mary while on the job (of erasing part of Joel's memory).
  • Joel and Clementine have beer and we hear Joel's thoughts, "She's gonna be drunk and stupid now."
  • Patrick uses intimate knowledge of Joel's past with Clementine to try to win her over.
  • We see a memory flashback of other young kids pressuring Joel to hammer an apparently dead or injured pigeon in a wagon (it's not moving). He hits it several times and one of the kids then bends his arm backwards.
  • Mary briefly kisses Dr. Mierzwiak and the two then do that some more.
  • Dr. Mierzwiak's wife then sees him kissing Mary and suggests that those two had an affair in the past. She says, "You can have him...you did."
  • In a warped memory, Clementine sneaks into someone else's beach house and makes Joel join her.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • We see Clementine with a featureless, flat face (no eyes, etc., just flat flesh) and Patrick's face appears to be upside down (in a weird, surreal moment). Later, we see Dr. Mierzwiak and Joel with similar, flat faces. Some viewers may find such imagery unsettling.
  • We see a memory flashback of other young kids pressuring Joel to hammer an apparently dead or injured pigeon in a wagon. He hits it several times.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Shut the f*ck up," "What's your f*cking suggestion?" "It's f*cking irresponsible," "I'm f*cking crawling out of my skin," "There's no time to f*ck around," "I'm just a f*cked up girl," "Get the f*ck away (from me), "You're full of sh*t, right?" "Oh sh*t," "Piece of sh*t," "I don't want to hear this sh*t," "I can't see sh*t," "Didn't do sh*t," "Bullsh*t," "Feel like crap," "Are you nuts?" (followed by "It's been suggested"), "I'm a vindictive little bitch," "Nutso," "What the hell /is that/are you talking about?" "You're like an old lady," "Freaked out," "Faggot," "I'm really pissed at you," "You're freaking me out," "Pissy" and "Are you screwing with me?"
  • Clementine has some of her hair dyed blue.
  • Clementine has a very reluctant Joel walk across and then lie on a frozen lake.
  • Joel tosses an audio cassette out a window (littering).
  • We hear that Clementine had been drunk driving.
  • We see bits where Joel and Clementine (as kids and then adults) are smothering each other (in a somewhat playful manner and nothing bad happens). In the adult mode, he puts his hand on her clothed breasts (she shows cleavage) and her butt as she has a pillow over his face.
  • In a warped memory, Clementine sneaks into someone else's beach house and makes Joel join her.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A brief bit of suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 29 "f" words (5 used sexually), 15 "s" words, 3 damns, 3 craps, 2 hells, 1 ass, 9 uses of "Oh my God," 8 of "Jesus," 7 of "God," 5 of "G-damn," 3 of "Jesus Christ," 2 of "Oh God" and 1 use each of "My God," "Oh Christ" and "Oh Jesus."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Clementine asks Joel if he wants a drink and says that she has lots. The two then have drinks and she tells him to drink up as it will make "the whole seduction part less repugnant" (and then adds that she's kidding).
  • Clementine sarcastically talks as if speaking Joel's mind and says, "Did she f*ck someone tonight?" Joel then says that he assumed "you f*cked someone" and then asks that isn't that the way she gets people to like her.
  • Patrick admits that he stole a pair of Clementine's panties.
  • We briefly see Clementine in her bra (that shows cleavage) as she gets dressed.
  • We see a clothed Stan dancing with Mary (who's in a top and her small panties) on top of a bed while high. Later, we see him in just his briefs while dancing with her (she's dressed the same way).
  • We see Joel on top of Clementine under some bed covers and the two are kissing.
  • As Clementine talks about the way Joel wanted to have sex with her after looking at his crotch, we see his point of view of her panty-covered crotch. Later, she tells him that her crotch is still there, just as he remembers it (but he's now playing a childhood version of himself and thinks it's gross when she pulls up her dress to show her panties).
  • It's implied that Stan and Mary had sex. When something goes wrong across the room, he hops up from the chair they're in and pulls on his underwear (nothing explicit seen). We then see her holding some fabric around her body.
  • Clementine shows some cleavage.
  • We see a surreal scene showing Joel and Clementine (as miniature) people in the kitchen sink filled with bubbles (her bare shoulders are seen).
  • We see a memory from Joel's past (where he's his adult self playing him as a teenager, and Clementine is in bed with him). He's masturbating (we see hand movement) -- and looking at a cartoon drawing of a bare-breasted woman who's bent over with an animal's face at her rear -- when his mother walks in on him.
  • We see bits where Joel and Clementine (as kids and then adults) are smothering each other (in a somewhat playful manner and nothing bad happens). In the adult mode, he puts his hand on her clothed breasts (she shows cleavage) and her butt as she has a pillow over his face.
  • Mary briefly kisses Dr. Mierzwiak and the two then do that some more.
  • Dr. Mierzwiak's wife then sees him kissing Mary and suggests that those two had an affair in the past. She says, "You can have him...you did."
  • We see the side of Clementine's mostly bare butt (in her thong panties) as she looks at herself in a mirror.
  • We hear Joel's comments on a tape about Clementine and he uses the "f" word sexually several times (repeating some dialogue from earlier in the film).
  • SMOKING
  • Clementine smokes once (in a memory portraying someone else), while a friend of Joel's smokes twice.
  • We see a cigarette in one of Clementine's potato head dolls.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The concept of erasing a failed relationship from one's memory.
  • We hear that Clementine had been drunk driving.
  • What is reality?
  • VIOLENCE
  • Joel discovers that someone has smashed part of his car.
  • Clementine playfully punches Joel's shoulder.
  • We see a memory flashback of other young kids pressuring Joel to hammer an apparently dead or injured pigeon in a wagon (it's not moving). He hits it several times and one of the kids then bends his arm backwards.
  • Dr. Mierzwiak's wife whacks at Stan for him trying to cover Dr. Mierzwiak's indiscretions.



  • Reviewed February 24, 2004 / Posted March 19, 2004

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