JOEL DECIDES to have the memories of his ex-girlfriend erased after she’s had him erased from her own memory. But as he goes ‘backwards’ through their relationship, the memories get better and better and Joel changes his mind—and tries to hang on to their shared experiences together…
“How happy is the blameless vestal’s lot! The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind! Each pray’r accepted, and each wish resign’d”
—Alexander Pope, “Eloisa to Abelard”
In other hands, the premise of memory-erasing could become a trashy science-fiction thriller, but scriptwriter Charlie Kaufman and director Michel Gondry spin this idea into a funny, sad, structurally complex, and enthralling love story that juggles morality, identity, and heartbreak with confident skill.