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Entering the Twilight Zone

MOVIE REVIEW
Remember Me (2010)

RM-011+DF-02507R
Nicole Rivelli/Summit Entertainment

For the most part, “Remember Me” retreads the tiresome story of boy meets girl; they fall in love; girl’s daddy interferes; some lame misunderstanding involving girl’s daddy threatens to wreck the romance; boy eventually wins girl back, etc. In other words, the film is for the most part indistinguishable from all the Nicholas Sparks movie adaptations, save for the fact that Robert Pattinson is in it.

The “Twilight” heartthrob stars as Tyler, a sullen troublemaker who harbors serious resentment toward his neglectful hot-shot lawyer dad, Charles (Pierce Brosnan), whom Tyler blames for his brother’s suicide. Emilie de Ravin of television’s “Lost” plays Ally, who witnessed her mother’s murder during a robbery. Ally, daughter of the overprotective Sgt. Craig (Chris Cooper), obviously has her own daddy issues. Needless to say, Tyler and Ally hit it right off. Thing is, Sgt. Craig once arrested Tyler, who initially asks Ally out only as retaliation.

The thing that really sets “Remember Me” apart is the big twist it has in store, which many reviews have been giving away for its generally poor taste. But discussing it is necessary in order to adequately address the only controversy that makes the film remotely memorable. So consider yourself warned.

The film, set in New York City in September of 2001, ends with Tyler standing in front of a floor-to-ceiling window in Charles’s office. The camera then pulls back to reveal that Tyler is in fact standing inside the Twin Towers at the World Trade Center moments before the terrorist attack. It’s mind boggling why novice screenwriter Will Fetters, who had been closely adhering to the soap-operatic formula up to this point, would want to insert something this gratuitous and false. There had been some genuinely moving moments in spite of the cliché-ridden script, particularly the story lines involving Tyler’s younger sister, Caroline (Ruby Jerins). Without providing proper context to justify the citation of this devastating chapter in history, the twist exposes Mr. Fetters as a mere lazy opportunist.

REMEMBER ME

Opens on March 12 in the United States and on April 2 in Britain.

Directed by Allen Coulter; written by Will Fetters; director of photography, Jonathan Freeman; edited by Andrew Mondshein; music by Marcelo Zarvos; production designer, Scott P. Murphy; costumes by Susan Lyall; produced by Nicholas Osborne and Trevor Engelson; released by Summit Entertainment (United States) and E1 Entertainment (Britain). Running time: 1 hour 53 minutes. This film is rated PG-13 by M.P.A.A.

WITH: Robert Pattinson (Tyler Hawkins), Emilie de Ravin (Ally Craig), Caitlyn Paige Rund (Ally as a child), Chris Cooper (Sgt. Neil Craig), Lena Olin (Diane Hirsch), Tate Ellington (Aidan Hall), Ruby Jerins (Caroline Hawkins), Pierce Brosnan (Charles Hawkins), Kate Burton (Janine), Gregory Jbara (Les Hirsch) and Martha Plimpton (Ally’s mother).

Comments

Another critic who missed the obvious: how else do you recreate the shock and grief of an event that came out of nowhere? Build the story backwards.

My family and I kept thinking about this movie, discussing it days later. The ending was not "tacked on". It had to be this way, unexpected like the event, and we had to care about the characters. I appreciate how brave the producers and actors were to take this on.

Did you bother to actually read this review, let alone seeing the movie? Just precise where did I use the words "tacked on"? Since I didn't, why were you misquoting me? Also, I am not sure what you meant by the story was built backward. It doesn't have a "Memento"-like narrative structure. If you meant Will Fetters were to construct a story around 9/11, then I'd say way to trivialize such an important chapter in history.

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