Even if Academy voters snubbed Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind for every category except Best Original Screenplay (Kate Winslet got a nom for Supporting Actress), critics and fans know better that the movie was easily the best of 2004 and is an inventive modern classic. Charlie Kaufmans complicated, emotional script incorporates elements of science fiction and philosophy to tell a poetic love story, and his quirks work flawlessly with director Michel Gondrys visually groundbreaking style. Gondry uses special effects, strange camera techniques, and bizarre lighting, breaking all sorts of cinema conventions to put the viewer in the mind of someone whos losing their memories of love one by onemaking you confront the question, Would you erase painful memories if you had the chance? Also worth nothing are the brilliantly understated performances of Winslet, Jim Carrey, Tom Wilkinson, Mark Ruffalo, and even Kirsten Dunst, who hasnt been this convincing since she was a bloodsucking child in Interview with a Vampire.
Jan. 9-13, 7 & 9:30 p.m., 2008