Sunday, July 27, 2008

Memento


Memento; Thriller, USA, 2000; D: Christopher Nolan, S: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Mark Boone Junior, Russ Fega, Stephen Tobolowsky, Jorja Fox

Leonard kills James...Earlier: Leonard uses a photo to conclude that James killed and raped his wife and decides to take revenge...Earlier: Leonard tells a motel guest that he suffers from anterograde amnesia ever since an unknown man attacked him and killed his wife...Earlier: Leonard meets up with Natalie with whom he spent the night together...Earlier: Natalie double crossed Leonard and persuaded him to attack Dodd in order to use him...Earlier: Leonard remembers Sammy, who also suffered from amnesia...Earlier: Leonard kills dealer Jimmy because cop James told him he was the murderer. Then he starts to suspect.

Very good independent thriller that launched the career of director Christopher Nolan handles the theme of amnesia in a very original way: by showing the story from the end up to the beginning. Already in the first scene does the film unravel the finale in which the hero kills the bad guy (it's also shot backwards: the blood returns, the bullet lifts up from the floor and goes back in the pistol...), immediately putting the most crucial scene behind it, yet it still very skillfully builds it's suspense: right after that sequence, there follows a cut and a sequence from earlier events are shown, then from the day before, and the day before that, and so until the start. The theme of amnesia and a detective has already been used in comedy "Clean Slate", yet the director leads the story in a tighter way, placing the viewers in a position of uncertainty since he never discovers them more than the hero. Despite Nolan's "autistic" direction and grey mood, "Memento" is a memorable film, equipped with good dialogues, like when the motel guest says to the hero: "Just don't forget to pay the bill!", even though some characters are rather vague, like the one of Carrie-Anne Moss. The screenplay was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe.

Grade:+++

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