3.3: Sunshine v Lost (Poll Closed)

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Poll posted 7 months ago.

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28 Comments

  • Gustav Arndal (Copenhagen) - 7 months ago

    Eternal Sunshine is my favourite movie of all time and has been ever since I first watched it. Not only one of the first movies that blew me away when I was first getting into film, it has stuck with me and continues to reward revisiting. If ever someone's heart is broken and their best memories tainted by regret, this movie needs to be there to break it even more, and start the mending. I would like nothing more than for this perfect, perfect movie to make it all the way.

  • John - 7 months ago

    it kinda made me sad when josh only mentioned sam, when referring to episode 300, matty was an integral part of that episode. eternal sunshine for matty. it's so cool that he watched eternal sunshine of a spotless mind, because of a recommendation and it became his favorite movie of the decade. ballgame better made a guest appearance one day!

  • Tim - 7 months ago

    For me this is the sweet 16 matchup that most deserves to get the bracket-makers fired. Not only are they my two favorites in the tournament, and perhaps of all time, but they occupy the same space in my heart. Both films incisively capture the feelings of loneliness and regret, without being dreary as films. Both show how one can find moments of beauty, humor, and companionship in the midst of a world in which we are alone, but they never force a happy bow on it.

    As tough as a choice as this is, I'm going to turn as a tiebreaker to a nice way to punish at least one of the bracket-makers. If Lost in Translation wins this round, it's going in the pantheon. Adam promised. So that's how I'm voting.

  • These two movies sit side-by-side on the "Favourite Movies" selections of my Letterboxd page... so that's how serious this is. Eternal Sunshine is the more inventive film, both in story and execution... but Lost in Translation is one of those rare films that I can enter into whether I'm happy or sad or elated or depressed and still have it meet me halfway... and that pushes it just far ahead enough to give it my vote. What am I going to do about the blank space on my page, though?

  • Joseph Orlando - 7 months ago

    The more I work my way through Madness, the more I become convinced that Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind should land in the number one spot. These are both beautiful films, and this was perhaps the toughest choice to make yet. In the end, if I follow the guidelines of which movie disappearing would leave the film landscape more barren, Spotless Mind wins this round, and I can't see voting against it in future ones.

  • Jason Mayer - 7 months ago

    When I made my own Top 40 Films of the 2000s at the end of that decade, Eternal Sunshine was my #1 and Lost in Translation was my #2. And nine years later I'm pretty sure they would both still be in my top 2. As I have grown older, revisits of these films have only proven that the themes still resonate, but in different and surprising ways. Both came out around the beginning of my marriage, and now 15 years into it, my changing perspective on life and love is reflected in Bob's and Joel's feelings, while still recognizing and empathizing with where Charlotte and Clementine are.

    They are both wonderful films that I will always cherish, but for this contest, Eternal Sunshine still ekes out the victory.

  • Chris Massa - Pittsburgh, PA - 7 months ago

    A movie I love going up against one I need to revisit. Lost in Translation is a movie that, for whatever reason, I appreciate more in hindsight than in the moment, and while it has its moments, it never quite lands for me. Eternal Sunshine is a different animal entirely, a movie that connects with me every time I see it. I wish this one was closer, but it's not just. Eternal Sunshine all the way.

  • Robert MacGregor - 7 months ago

    This is, of course, a tough one - most of the bracket is. Sunshine plays with it's themes, and is technically and visually fun - it's clever and intriguing, but even the thought of Lost in Translation makes me want to cry. It is affecting on a human level that Sunshine isn't, and in the end that is ultimately what matters and why it gets my vote.

  • Jordan Tymann - 7 months ago

    This is by far the hardest match-up I've ever seen in ANY year of Filmspotting Madness! I love both of these films so much, and for such similar reasons, that it seems impossible to pick between them. In the end, I think I will have to go with Lost in Translation for the very subjective reason that I like what it is saying about communication and cultural boundaries and expectations that we see all around us on an everyday basis. However, if this match-up goes the other way, I won't be too disappointed.

  • Matt from NYC! - 7 months ago

    Adam and Josh, here’s an idea: How about we just to cancel Filmspotting Madness so we can save both films? Wouldn’t that just be the best choice? Granted, In Bruges will theoretically be reincarnated but I’m willing to take that hit for the sake of these two emotional masterpieces.

    But seriously — given that both Translation and Sunshine are romantic staples of the decade (both, Josh, both), this is an extremely tough choice. In the end, I’m going to have to give Sunshine my [reluctant] vote, as its technical flourishes just barely give it the edge for me.

  • Neil Mitchell - 7 months ago

    Lost In Translation, immaculate, deep in my heart, great as Sunshine is, it doesn’t get near Bill and Scarlett and Sofia’s genius.

  • Neil Mitchell - 7 months ago

    Lost In Translation, immaculate, deep in my heart,

  • Mike H. - 7 months ago

    I can think of about 50 better films from the 2000's that deserved to be in this tournament over Lost in Translation from the very first round. That being said.......this is a pretty perfect match-up. Two films about the futility in trying to control the relationships in your life or the way they end up shaping you. Like trying to hold water in your hands.

    At the end of the day, not only is Eternal Sunshine just a better film, but Charlie Kaufman deserves to be in this tournament just on the merits of his towering presence in the decade in question. Synecdoche deserved to be here, too, but that's another gripe for another time.

  • Mike H. - 7 months ago

    I can think of about 50 better films from the 2000's that deserved to be in this tournament over Lost in Translation from the very first round. That being said.......this is a pretty perfect match-up. Two films about the futility in trying to

    At the end of the day, not only is Eternal Sunshine just a better film, but Charlie Kaufman deserves to be in this tournament just on the merits of his towering presence in the decade in question. Synecdoche deserved to be here, too, but that's another gripe for another time.

  • Garrett - 7 months ago

    Maybe it's because I'd just moved to Korea from Charleston, SC and was literally finding myself lost and amazed and lonely when I first saw Lost in Translation, but regardless it's the superior film to Eternal Sunshine, which never connected with me.

    Where Lost is full of humanity and jetlagged longing for connection, breathtaking shots of the sensory overloaded Tokyo cityscape (contrasted with the quiet beauty of Kyoto), all set to an ethereal soundtrack, Eternal Sunshine seems gimmicky, contrived, and forced.

    Murray and Johansson are believable and have genuine chemistry, whereas even the amazing Winslett couldn't convince me her capricious pixie character had any dimension, much less a connection with Ace Ventura. Carrey was just ok, but the role would have been better played by practically any other other male actor alive and resulted in a better film.

    Dunst and Frodo were distractions, and Wilkinson and Ruffalo could have been making better films whereas Johansson and Murray pulled out career bests. Props to Rabisi and Faris for their counterpoint roles in Lost.

    Thank you for just this once providing an easy choice, and long live Lost in Translation, a movie I rewatch at least twice a year when I need reminding of what it feels like to have the stars align, make a life altering connection at an unexpected and perfect time, and then let it end before the intensity and mystery fade into routine and banality. Life can't be lived that way, but to have even one of those experiences makes for a much more meaningful and satisfying life.

  • Dana Bango - 7 months ago

    Eternal Sunshine shines brighter and is less precious than Lost. I found the semi-romantic lead pairing in Lost to be icky. I love the concept and weirdness of Sunshine; it haunts me still.

  • Arjun Fischer - 7 months ago

    I was sure that I would have to stick with Lost in Translation until at least the final four, but Eternal Sunshine is another masterpiece in my mind. It helps that although Lost in Translation will likely be gone forever, at least those beautiful Tokyo cityscapes will be available in Her (until 2020 Madness)

  • Henrik Tronstad - 7 months ago

    Maybe the two best films in the whole competeition, at least final 4 worthy... I got a stronge reaction from Sunshine so... so be it.

  • Erin Teachman (Washington, DC) - 7 months ago

    Lost in Translation's greatest strength is in showing the emotional truths of a relationship without forcing the characters to articulate their feelings and my favorite moment in it is the very end when Sofia Coppola deliberately refuses to let us participate in that relationship. Eternal Sunshine is all about the sprawling uncontrollable sprawl of our emotional lives and the disastrous consequences of trying to suppress them. It's a brutal choice, but right now I'm choosing Eternal Sunshine's verbal and visual expression of our messy emotions over Translation's careful discretion

  • Steven Jarzombek - 7 months ago

    Two movies I really LOVE. But having to pick just one I would have to pick “Lost in translation”. I can relate. I am middle-aged, I used to live in Japan, I too am lonely and could so much fall in love with somene as sweet and perfect as Scarlett Johanson.

  • Lawrence - 7 months ago

    This is the real finals match, all those other so-called films are just filler. Eternal Sunshine gets the vote, but enough with Adam's McConnell-esque filibustering: put Lost In Translation in the Pantheon!

  • Adam Grossman, Vancouver, B.C. - 7 months ago

    Adam fixed this, didn't he? Just so he could keep 'Lost in Translation' out of the Filmspotting Pantheon. A victory in this round means it's in, right? Let's make it happen.

    (P.S. I think 'Eternal Sunshine...' will win and, y'know, it's such a masterpiece I can't think of another movie I'd rather my beloved 'Lost in Translation' falls to.

  • Timbre Livesay - 7 months ago

    Just ouch.

  • Adam Fromm - 7 months ago

    You Effing Bastards
    A play in one act, by me:

    Me: "Lost in Translation" is the best movie of the '00s. Hands down.
    Filmspotting: Really?
    Me: Yep.
    Filmspotting: You sure?
    Me: Yep.
    Filmspotting: Are you suurrrrre you're sure?
    Me: I'm...wait, what's that?
    Filmspotting: What's what?
    Me: Wait, what are you....
    Filmspotting: Nothing. Nothing at all.
    Me: You...there's something behind your back, what've you....
    Filmspotting: It's...a...a donut.
    Me: [blinks] A donut.
    Filmspotting: Yes.
    Me. [pause] It looks like a poll question.
    Filmspotting: Nope. No poll question. Just a donut.
    Me: [warily] Oooookay....
    Filmspotting: So. "Lost in Translation" it is, then?
    Me: Um. Yes?
    Filmspotting: Hahahahaaa! PROVE IT, weakling! [whips out "Lost in Translation" vs. "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" Death Match like a damn flaming katana]
    Me: [slowly sinks into a fetal position, lip quivering] Why? Whyyyyy? [dies, clutching my BluRay collection to my bosom]

    THE END

    In the end, "L.i.T." did get my vote. If it loses, I will accept its graceful albeit belated induction into the Pantheon as a consolation prize to warm my proverbial soul, whilst I piece back together the shattered remains of my psyche.

  • Alex from Tacoma, WA - 7 months ago

    I'm probably going to forget what I voted for here but I went with Sunshine. Both I enjoy immensely but Sunshine perhaps wins for the technical aspects which match the emotional core.

  • Stephen Miller - 7 months ago

    This is an extremely nostalgic match for me. I think it's fair to say that no two films shaped my budding taste in cinema more than Coppola and Gondry's. Both came out while I was in highschool, and occupy a hallowed place alongside Kurt Vonnegut, e.e. cummings, "hyperliterate" indie folk and a misunderstanding of Camus -- things that I could obsess over, call my own, could use to rein in the human condition.

    Both are films which have evolved with me over at least a dozen revisits. When I first saw Lost In Translation, I could only clue into the broad strokes: the allure of Johansson, the sadness of Murray, the thrill of being in some far-off land. As the years have gone on, the salient details change. After visiting Tokyo for the first time, it struck me as a pitch-perfect depiction of the city's blur. After my 8th or 9th business trip there, it became less an "accurate" portrayal of the city than of the rose-colored glasses travel gives you: the way everything become at once happy and sad, a warming sort of loneliness you wouldn't trade for the world. Now, when I watch it, it's the characters' undercurrents that hit me: the way Murray isn't *sad* so much as settled into the grooves of life, open to adventure but sturdy all the same; the way Scarlett will learn to do the same, long after he's become a footnote: all of this will become so much easier.

    Eternal Sunshine started by being about relationships, but grew more general as time went on. On my first "date night" viewing with my highschool sweetheart, it was all about the indomitable nature of love. On my next, shortly after the breakup, it took on a more tragic tint; a reminder that my hurt was part of a bigger arc. A few relationships and some dozen viewings later, it had become about that same thing Lost In Translation became about: the happy-sad, the lonely you savor, the innate feeling that life's ups and downs were its own reward worth taking for another spin.

    Emotionally these two were neck and neck, and if you'd asked me at 17 I would have probably said Lost In Translation. But having been able to revisit both on the big screen last year, it's not even a question. For its endlessly inventive visual style, its pitch-perfect script, and for giving me an entirely new language to think about life, Eternal Sunshine has to win this match. And, if there's any justice in this world, it should take the whole tournament too.

  • Tim Oliver - 7 months ago

    I love both of these to my core. Having such a hard time imagining one of them being destroyed and lost forever.

    As a tiebreaker, I'm going with Lost in Translation just to get it into the pantheon.

  • Anthony Cervo - 7 months ago

    You monsters! Pitting my 2 dark horses against each other. Probably more so than any of the other films in the entire bracket, I have had an extensive emotional relationship with these 2 films. Both came around the time I started getting heavy into film. Although, it's better to have loved and lost, and to my spotted mind, I'm going with Lost in Translation. You sons of bitches.

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