Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

"Mood Indigo": Michel Gondry Dazzles Us with Twee-D 

Wednesday, Jul 23 2014

Boris Vian's 1947 novel L'Ecume des Jours (Froth on the Daydream) finds its way into movie form for the third time, froth very much intact, courtesy of French whimsy junkie Michel Gondry. Who better to reimagine that old surreal chestnut about a well-to-do young man, the inventor of a cocktail-making piano, marrying a woman with the peculiar life-threatening condition of a flower growing in her lung? Well, Mood Indigo is more tedious and less fun than Gondry's last movie, which is saying something because that one was a rambling conversation with Noam Chomsky. Theoretically it should help that his lead players here are Romain Duris and Audrey Tatou, known allies of the stridently cutesy, but they only really contribute by having enough stamina to withstand the director's manic shotgun blasts of arty gestures. Characters this cartoonish need simpler backgrounds, and no amount of rolling around in spazzy stop-motion animation, dancing on spindly puppet legs, or picnicking in a split-screen of sunny and rainy skies will get us to care more about them. This stuff makes Wes Anderson look like an ascetic. Frayed with lack of discipline from moment one, Gondry's frolic proceeds hastily from merry to morose before finally petering out. Can he even sit still long enough to feel anything?

Tags: ,

About The Author

Jonathan Kiefer

SF Weekly movie critic Jonathan Kiefer is on Twitter: @kieferama and of course @sfweeklyfilm.


Comments are closed.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"