is one of my favorite directors known for “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and “Science of Sleep”, and his latest film appears to be an even bigger dosage of his familiar surrealism and theatrical visual effects. It will be released in the U.S. this summer…
“L’ecume des Jours”
Some who have seen it already claim that the effects are too much this time and drown out the story, but I would think that most of Gondry’s dreamlike scenes and magical quirks and props are not supposed to be ‘relevant’ to a cohesive plot, but stem from the idea of playing with surrealism and visual gimmicks for the sake of the childlike wonder with blending imagination and reality…for the sake of playing with film itself. That’s the way I read Gondry’s style, which is much like the theatrics of early films from the 1910’s and 20’s. I still have to wait to see it when its released soon, but so far, I like his work.
Gondry, like a few other notable filmmakers, started out, directing music videos for musicians like Bjork, the White Stripes, Radiohead, etc. In case you haven’t seen his feature films yet, you can get an idea of his innovation with dream-like effects and motion in film, and a love of theater-stage-like-settings and props. Here’s one he did for Bjork in 1993: