As a director, Michel Gondry has never been afraid to engage in a bit of visual whimsy: Just think of the “Baby Joel” scenes from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Green Hornet’s fight sequences, the “dream preparation” bit from The Science of Sleep, or nearly any clip from Gondry’s long and delightful music-video résumé. (The man is not afraid of a little bit of yarn and a lot of stop-motion animation.) Still, even audiences who are used to Gondry’s inventiveness may be surprised by the sheer amount of visual quirks he’s packed into his newest film, Mood Indigo. The movie’s unusual premise — Colin (Romain Duris) must attend to the love of his life (Audrey Tautou) when a water lily begins to grow in her lungs — may actually be the most down-to-earth thing about it, because rarely a minute passes by in Mood Indigo where Gondry fails to stack the scene with bits of surreal visual appeal that pass in a flash. To prove to you that Gondry’s new movie may be his Gondriest movie ever, we’ve captured some of the craziness in GIFs, which you can check out below. Rest assured, these all come from the first half-hour of the movie and are just the tip of a very big, very homemade iceberg.
Strands of sunlight streaming in through Colin’s window are represented onscreen by literal strands of yarn … which Colin then plays like a bass violin, as a mouse (played by a man in a mouse costume) dances to the beat below. Just very normal stuff that you see in every movie, this stuff right here:
Need to avoid traffic? Easy: Just take a rainbow road wherever you’re going.
This is what all the food looks like in Mood Indigo — both tasty and terrifying, thanks to jerky-jerky stop-motion animation.
Characters don’t keep appointment books or tap upcoming events into their iPhone calendars; if they need to know what’s going on that week, they simply consult a Rubik’s cube that can be arranged by days of the week.
When the doorbell rings at Colin’s place, the doorbell actually crawls around like a big, buzzing insect … that can be stomped and split into lots more tiny doorbell-things.
Much is made in Mood Indigo of a brand-new dance craze that you cannot replicate at home unless you have surreally elongated legs and an impressively low center of gravity.
Why fumble around with tying a tie when you can just nail it wherever it needs to be?
Colin’s latest invention? The pianocktail, a piano that picks up on whatever song you’re playing and then measures and prepares the perfect drink to accompany your tune.
Announcements at the ice-skating rink are made by a terrifying bird the size of a human, because of course.
If you live in an apartment where stop-motion eels peek out of your faucet (while a mouse runs around your kitchen via image projection), should you move? Or is this the sort of thing that prompted you to sign a lease in the first place?
You know what? Forget that rainbow road we mentioned earlier. If you really want to see Paris, there’s no better way to travel than by cloud.