Mood IndigoPosted: June 17, 2014
Since I didn’t do a full review of The Grand Budapest Hotel last week, I’m making it up with the review of another movie from a director who also has a distinct visual style – Michel Gondry’s “L’Écume des jours”, aka “Mood Indigo”.
I’ve loved Michel Gondry’s work since Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and while his other films that I’ve seen (Be Kind Rewind, The Science of Sleep) are not as great in term of story, they’re still fun to watch. (I pretend The Green Hornet didn’t happen, just like I pretend Alien: Resurrection didn’t happen with Jean-Pierre Jeunet. What the hell were they thinking, hiring these indie French directors to direct Hollywood blockbusters?) “Mood Indigo” is the same. I’ve heard people complaining that the story is a mess, or that it is unsatisfying, and that the visuals are either pointless or overwhelming. To which I say: this is a surreal film. Don’t watch it for a neat, structured story. Watch it for the weird and wonderful imagery, watch it for the bizarre and fun details, but don’t watch it for the story. I’m not that familiar with surreal films, but with this one, I know that’s how I enjoyed it. Besides, it is the adaptation of a surreal novel by Boris Vian, and from what I’ve heard about the novel, the movie sticks pretty close to the source material.
That being said, here’s a summary anyway: Colin (Romain Duris) is a wealthy bachelor who spends his time inventing things like a pianocktail – a piano that makes cocktails as it’s being played. At a party, he meets Chloe (Audrey Tatou); they quickly fall in love and get married, but their happiness is short-lived when Chloe is diagnosed with a rare illness: there is a water lily growing in her lungs.
Like I said, though, it really doesn’t matter what the story is about. Just look at these screencaps and this gifset,which shows that stop-motion style Gondry is well-known for, and decide for yourself if it’s your cup of tea (or your pianocktail).