Semi Recall

The lean, mean Memento makes the most of its simple gimmicks

Apart from that, however, there's not much to Memento, and if its elements were arranged chronologically, there'd be almost no draw at all. As it stands it's a passable diversion, but imagine if hit films had always relied on this gimmick. We'd have all-new perceptions of Jaws ("Let's reassemble that big shark and go swimming!"), Blade Runner ("Oh well, she's a skin job, so I think I'll just walk around mumbling in the rain ..."), and The Wizard of Oz ("Kansas again? Shit! What the hell happened to all the flying monkeys?").

Short-term memory loss never seemed so weird
Danny Rothenberg
Short-term memory loss never seemed so weird

Details

Based on a short story by Jonathan Nolan. Opening at selected theaters.

Although it's being touted for its undeniably ambitious narrative structure, Memento feels mostly like an audacious prank, "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." It may be that Nolan is not so adept at mystery, but rather just unprepared to deliver characters with strong identities.

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