Michel Gondry’s Mood Indigo is a French kissing cousin – even (locked so close in style and content) a French-kissing cousin – of the same director’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. But don’t all rush at once. Unlike me you may have adored the Jim Carrey/Kate Winslet comical-fantastical romance. The new film intensifies, even caricatures, the older film’s whimsicality.
No reality is allowed to sit still before being goosed by surreality. Wealthy Romain Duris lives in a house crammed with archly amusing inventions, from a “pianocktail” (different notes or chords make different drinks) to tables and trays that locomote your food. Enter Audrey Tautou, an actress easy to regard as an invention herself: French cinema’s Mademoiselle Winsome. She decants fresh litres of syrupy whimsy until we cry: “When!” By then it is too late; we have drowned in and with the movie. Based on a 1947 Boris Vian novel, L’Écume des Jours (Froth on the Daydream), the film may have been for Gondry a labour of love. To which the only just comment is a well-known play title by Shakespeare.