Saturday, October 16, 2010

Film Review(Yao) -- Memento

At first, I didn't know we will watch the movie in class, so I watched it on Wednesday night, then I totally confused by its narrative structure, I felt so lucky that I checked the blog then I found we will watch it in class. After watching Memento for twice, I still didn't quite understand the story, even I found some movie reviews from other people... but anyway, I will try my best for the below review!

The main actor Lenny is a man who has short-term memory condition, his wife was killed and the rest of his life is for revenge.
It is only a 90 minutes long movie, but it represent a person's life for several months. It has two story lines -- black and white, colored. The black and white story is in sequence of time, the colored story is flashback. At the first 10 minutes, I didn't know it is flashback, we could only saw the main actor Lenard/ Lenny killed Teddy and the glasses fell away, then it played backward, the glasses flew back to the Teddy's face and the bullet went back into the gun. Actually, it is already started the flashback, but we just did not notice it. Every piece is about 5 minutes long, and the last scene of the new piece always over lapped one shot with the last piece, so the audience could tie the two pieces together that make it clear to understand the narration, at the last of the movie, Teddy told Lenny the whole thing and it also gave us some clues to thread all of the pieces together, so the story is, with the help of Teddy, Lenny killed the John G., and he forgot he did it, he found another John G. to kill and another, finally, Teddy was killed because Lenny found the initial of Teddy’s real name was John G. too, since then, we understood that Lenny is a patient who forced himself to have a purpose to live, but what is the relationship with the black and white story?

The story in black and white used the sequence of time, every time we watched scene, Lenny is talking on phone, from his words we realized he was investigating a fraudulent claim, the man Sammy had the same condition with Lenny, Sammy’s wife did not want to believe this fact, in order to wake up Sammy, his wife let Sammy gave shots to her till her die, Sammy was sent to hospital as the end. It seems that this is another story with nothing relationship with Lenny, but at the last, before Teddy died, he said Sammy didn’t have a wife and some other details that proved there was no such Sammy story, the story is Lenny himself, Lenny killed his wife by giving shots to her wife, because he didn’t want to remember this history, he got the memory condition, I think that is one kind of the self protection, Lenny only remember the thing he wanted to.

I never watched a movie like this one, the director broke the story into so many pieces, and use a complete flashback way to represent the whole story, it is like a puzzle, every piece is a clue, only could we finish the movie then could solved all the puzzle and found the answer.

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