Memento (2000)

What you need to know about Memento before watching is that (1) the black and white sequences are chronological and the coloured ones are reverse chronological. I went in blind, as per usual, and the film is confusing enough without making it harder for yourself.

The film itself is incredibly fascinating. Memento is one of these films that are meant to confuse you. We have Leonard, who suffers from short term memory loss and who’s on the search for his wife’s killer with the help of tattoos, notes and polaroid pictures. I have to learn to trust my handwriting, he says.

I will boldly admit that in my opinion, the greatest thing about Memento is director Christopher Nolan. While we’re all confused, there’s just enough of light to make us see what’s happening right ahead of us. Our hero has amnesia, but the repetition never gets tiring (Don Jon, I’m looking at you) and Nolan keeps us at the edge of our seats, each new twist making the film even more clever and interesting. I can’t tell you any of the twists, of course, but god, I want to.

Now – Guy Pearce. He made the film his, even with all the genius of Nolan. We emphatise with Leonard, because we’ve earned our trust issues with the other people in the film – Teddy, whose identity keeps changing, and Natalie, whose relationship with Leonard is probably the most confusing part of the film. And if you, like I, at one point discover how unreliable our amnesiac Leonard is, you just give up on trying to guess what is the truth and enjoy the journey from the end to the beginning.

So, thank you Stevee, who listed Memento as her favourite film and gave me the push to add this to my Blind Spot Series. It was a fascinating watch and made me truly appreciate both Nolan and Pearce. Oh, do watch this, if you haven’t already.

The Blind Spot Series is a blogathon led by Ryan at The Matinee, where the aim is to watch an essential film every year. You can find my choices for 2014 here.

29 responses to “Memento (2000)

  1. Pingback: Blindsided by CHARADE | The Matinee | Cinematic Passion & Perspective

  2. Great review of a great movie. : )

  3. Don’t you mean amnesia? Anemia is a low blood cell count. Other than that, great write-up.

  4. This film is great. Just great.

    It remains my favorite Nolan movie. No matter the quality of film he has made since nothing else even comes all that close.

    • Glad you liked it so! I’m not that big of a fan of the Batman trilogy, so this is my favourite film of the his, too. 😛 Can’t wait for Interstellar, though!

  5. Very nice write-up of a cracking film 🙂

  6. You’re most welcome. How great is this film? It is definitely what cinema is all about.

  7. Love this film. Needs a revisit I think. Top work 🙂

  8. Nice one Elina! Memento is one of my favourites. It’s been in my personal top ten ever since it’s release. I love it, man.

  9. Great review! This was a good one, and one I’ve been wanting to revisit for awhile.

  10. “Memory can change the shape of a room; it can change the color of a car. And memories can be distorted. They’re just an interpretation, they’re not a record, and they’re irrelevant if you have the facts.”

    How trippy an idea is that – that our own eyewitness memories are completely unreliable?

    My own memory of this film is that of being nudged towards it by my best friend. She’d seen it at some crummy theatre when it was released, and told me that I had to track it down. I never did, until it finally made the jump to DVD…and when it did, I realized I was a stupid stupid man for not listening to my friend.

    What I love about this film, is that in a way it’s reliant upon a gimmick (“It’s the story told backwards”). However, the way Pearce, Pantalone, and Fisher bring those characters to life in such nuanced ways gives the story so much life, and it rises above its gimmickry.

    Certainly glad you finally got to see it. There’s a feature on the DVD that allows you to watch the scenes in-sequence. Give it a look sometime if you can!

    • I watched it on Netflix, so don’t know how soon I can do that, but thank you for the tip! It would definitely be fascinating.

      The quote – I noticed it too, and it blew me away! And made me very uncomfortable. 😀 I also like the word “nuanced”, because there really is no better way to describe the actors.

      Thank you so much for stopping by, and for hosting the Blind Spot series!!

  11. Glad you finally saw this Elina. It was quite mind-boggling on first viewing but I really appreciate the artistry and acting that went into this. Guy Pearce’s such an underrated actor, this is surely one of his best work!

  12. This movie was bloody fantastic! Awesome review!

  13. Can’t wait to see this one for my next entry!!

  14. Interesting film, Guy Pearce has come a long way since neighbors 🙂

  15. Pingback: Blind Spots 2014 | Films and Coke

Tell me, tell me, TELL ME

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s