Is “Mood Indigo” The Most Realistic Surrealist Love Story Ever Made?
Based on Boris Vian’s novel L’Ecume des jours aka Froth on the Daydream, it’s a love story in a world of magical realism.
Working in a visual language, Gondry places the couple in a Paris of magical realism –like say the world of Angela Carter brought to life. Starring Chloe (Audrey Tautou, Amélie, Coco Before Chanel) and Colin (Romain Duris, The Beat My Heart Skipped), it tells the story of man living in a magical apartment who who meets a beautiful women, marries her, and has her move into his home. There’s so much that’s magical in the movie: the cloud car, pianocktail, the human aquarium limo, Colin’s reality-defying assistant Nicolas (Omar Sy, The Intouchables.)
Later, when the love story turns darker, and Chloe becomes ill with a problem with her lungs that can only be cured by surrounding her with flowers, the magical world and the fabulous apartment around the couple becomes darker and more broken as well.
While Gondry is best known for Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, I wasn’t reminded of that here. Tatou’s performance didn’t distract me with references to Amalie.
I’ve grown weary of love stories on film, with the seemingly endless pursuit of how couples get together. Film after film is about nothing more than falling in love, and achieving of the moment of “happily ever after.”
Although this film is fantastical and full of magical realism, looking at the lack of the “happily ever after” that’s forced inside nearly every Hollywood love story makes it feel much more “real” at least for me. In some ways the film is more like the movie Love Story than it is the traditional Hollywood love story.
Mood Indigo is currently playing in some cities.