File this one under: It was only a matter of time. The idea of an animated documentary about noted linguist, philosopher, and political dissident, Noam Chomsky,is so delightfully, deliriously nonsensical that it could only come from the dream-logic mind of Michel Gondry, the director behind two Charlie Kaufman-scripted tender and twisted masterpieces, 2001′s little-seen unconditional love fable/thriller, “Human Nature,” and the beloved upside-down love story, “The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.”
Gondry is not really breaking new ground by combining animation and non fiction. That’s been done before, and brilliantly, most recently in 2008′s “Waltz With Bashir,” an autobiographical excavation of Israeli filmmaker, Ari Folman’s memories of fighting in the 1982 Lebanon War. But taken in context, this whole package has an element of the surreal to it: The director of this week’s $40 million grossing comic book spectacle, “The Green Hornet” has chosen to make a documentary about an octogenarian MIT linguistics professor, known as an outspoken leftist cultural critic and self-proclaimed anarchist who wrote the 1988′s Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of Mass Media, which continues to be required reading for budding social theorists and dorm room intellectuals at liberal arts colleges everywhere. That’s the kind of leap into the realm of the obscure and arty directors only make when they’re looking to go rogue and escape the studio shackles after a particularly grueling experience of corporate filmmaking.
Whatever Gondry’s reasons are for taking on the towering task of cramming Noam Chomsky’s life into three animated acts — we’re just glad he’s getting back to the business of using the powers of his vast imagination and talent something other than mass-produced entertainment. We’ll be the first in line to see Noam Chomsky through his beautifully warped lens.