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Monday, December 11, 2023
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

Spotless Mind

Hands down one of the most interesting movies I have ever seen is Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, directed by Michel Gondry. Not only because I love Kate Winslet, but because the plot is so incredibly interesting.
To sum it up without giving too much away, the couple (composed of Winslet and Jim Carrey) have a falling out, and both decide – through a series of twists and turns – to have each other erased from their memory permanently.
This concept got me thinking: if you could erase a painful memory from your past, would you? I think this question is pondered a lot during hard times and suffering. You always wish you could erase that person who broke your heart, or that memory that hurts too much to remember.
But would you actually go through with it?
Throughout the movie the characters go on a journey through all of the times they have spent together, good and bad. This journey reveals a lot about human emotion.
As human beings, I think we are always searching for a way to end bad times, get ourselves out of heartache, focus only on the things that make us happy and try to shun negativity and the things that make us upset. Hell, people spend millions of dollars on therapy to get over issues in their past as proof of this theory, but what if they could pay to have them completely removed? Do you think they would?
For me, I think back to times in my life when I was at my lowest, times I wish I never had to experience again. But in a way, I believe the bad times are what characterize you as a person. The struggle to persevere through the tough parts of life and get through it with your head held high is what makes you a better person. While you may not believe it at the time, it really will pay off in the end.
"Without sadness we would no know joy" is a saying my mom used when I was feeling like I just couldn't carry on anymore. I believe in that statement whole-heartedly. Sure, it might be easier to just erase all the lost friendships and the heartache we have felt in life, but would you be willing to trade all the good times too? Better yet, when you make it through the bad times, doesn't it make you appreciate the good times that much more? I know it works that way with me.
The characters in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind realize that you never really know what you have, or how important memories are until they are moments from being sucked away.
Cherish your memories, good and bad, because they are what make you who you are. While you might wish you could erase someone, or something, from your mind today, it may come back to help you in the future even if for nothing more then making you a stronger person in the long run.




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