Eternal Sunshine is immensely moving for the way it depicts consciousness itself as a constant negotiation of pain and pleasure—the gradual slippage of memory removes essential parts of our personality.
In Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind [Gondry] clearly surpasses himself. For the first time he delivers an ending that doesn’t feel like either a cop-out or a throwaway, even if it’s Hollywood to the core. He’s also figured out a structure that perfectly matches the emotional tenor of his theme and isn’t just an amusement-park ride that can be forgotten as soon as it’s over.
Eerie and surreal, charming and tragic, the movie wrestles with the fundamental instability of all human relationships, achieving a wise and powerful vision that is — ironically for a tale about fading memories — unforgettable.