The Michigan Daily discovered in November 2004 that several articles written by arts editor Alex Wolsky did not meet the newspaper’s standard of ethical journalism. Parts of these stories had been plagiarized from other news sources. Although the article below has not been found to contain plagiarism, the Daily no longer stands by its content. For details, see the Daily’s editorial.

Thinking outside the box has never been an issue for Jon Brion. His iconoclasm, innate musical ability and constant quest for innovation — not to mention his unusual instrumentation and processes — have established him as one of the most interesting modern composers. His latest score, for Michel Gondry’s “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” has him staying on course with his own musical abilities and limitations. His sound is spacious yet focused: “Theme,” “Peer Pressure,” “Strings That Tie To You” and “Elephant Parade” all compliment the visual of “Sunshine” as well as stand on their own. As with Brion’s other works, pop songs play devil’s advocate to his short, spastic bursts. The Texas cult-cum-pop band Polyphonic Spree deliver two of the soundtrack’s most vapid moments, “Light & Day” and “It’s the Sun,” while Beck ambles through his first salient work since 2002’s Sea Change with a minimalist interpretation of Korgis’s “Everybody’s Gotta Learn Sometime” and ELO captivates with the dreamy, theatrical “Mr. Blue Sky.” Poor sequencing and flow harm the overall result. Not only is the tracklisting not in order of appearance in the film but the songs added to compliment Brion’s intricate score emerge as forced and gauche. But, while it isn’t perfect, this is still one of the most beautiful and diverse efforts ever done for a Charlie Kaufman film.

 

Rating:  3 out of 5 stars

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