Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Memento Review- Lauren

It has been a few years since I've seen Memento and ironically i had forgotten alot of what happened in it. I really like Christopher Nolan's style. He is a very smart and inventive filmmaker who tells a story through the fluidity of time and space. In Memento, we see Leonard trying desperately to solve the mystery of who killed his wife. Clearly, he is at the end of his rope, he has nothing else to lose since he has lost everything. His wife was his weight that tethered him to the reality of day to day life. He has lost all ability to form new memories and can only remember everything that happened before the murder. The intrigue of the story and the whodunit aspect are what draw you in as a viewer for almost the whole movie until the very end when it is revealed that Leonard may have been delusional this whole time. Everything about the end leaves all conclusions up in the air.

Along with Nolan's Inception, Memento is really the story about a man who goes to great lengths to redeem the life of his dead wife that which is driven by his own guilt. In essence, it is these base emotions, guilt, vengeance, anger, helplessness, and desperation, that drive these characters to create in their own minds a way to escape from this painful reality. Once Leonard has finally been told by Teddy what had happened in his past and he was doomed to repeat the loop of finding the anonymous killer of his wife forever, Leonard could have made a choice. He could have come to terms with what he had done to his wife and tried to atone and move on or he could ignore it all and continue to look for John G. which gave him some redemption. The convenience of his loss of short term memory worked in his favor. I love that the ending is left up to the audience to decide what happens. You really don't know who it is you should trust and who is telling the truth. Maybe everything that Teddy told Leonard was a lie. Most likely Natalie was using Leonard for her own gain. You want to feel for Leonard, and you do for most of all the film. You want the destitute husband to enact revenge on the brutal killer of his wife. The last few minutes of the film turn your expectations on their head and make you think that all you have seen is one big lie, just like Leonard may have seen, except the fact that he is now a lie himself.

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