Parents' Guide to

Mood Indigo

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Strange, fanciful, but tragic romance; some sex, violence.

Movie NR 2014 94 minutes
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Die-hard romantics will want to bring tissues for this one. The French-born, New York-based director Michel Gondry seems to be attracted to heart-rending romantic stories. In movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Science of Sleep, he used highly stylized and visually inventive methods to underline their purity and even naïveté. But without a solid source, his beautiful doodles have the effect of feeling ungrounded, of spiraling off somewhere into the universe.

Based on a 1947 novel by Boris Vian and sprinkled with Duke Ellington music, MOOD INDIGO has been cut by at least 30 minutes for its American release; it now runs 94 minutes. It seems unlikely that this material could successfully play past two hours without getting tiresome, but the shorter version feels almost cruelly abrupt. Nevertheless, the overall effect is quite potent thanks to the good-natured, unguarded qualities of the characters, as well as the fine performances.

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