Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Quick Look: REMEMBER ME

Remember Me takes its central romance very seriously, draping it with all kinds of somber import. College-aged New Yorkers Robert Pattinson and Emilie de Ravin meet and grow to love each other over the course of a summer. He’s from a rich family, represented by his businessman father (Pierce Brosnan). She’s from a lower middle-class family, represented by her policeman father (Chris Cooper). The movie moves in often predictable ways, but it’s elevated by the fine work from Brosnan and Cooper who turn stock roles into something a little more meaningful. The movie leans too heavily on de Ravin’s moodiness and Pattinson’s leftover deathly pallor from Twilight, but the story essentially works despite itself. The romance felt believable and both the inter- and intra-family conflict is handled nicely. Despite the burdensome tragedy that surrounds the characters (it opens with a fatal mugging and ends with, well, let’s just say it’s so ridiculously surprising and bracing that it almost becomes a fittingly sick punchline), the movie makes them feel, if not real, at the very least like well-inhabited types. Director Allen Coulter, from a script by Will Fetters, keeps the plot moving and the imagery simple while playing to the strengths of his actors. The main couple is believably drawn and the supporting cast, from their fathers and families to the stereotypical goofy best friend, is fine as well. This is a simple, standard film that satisfies in its ordinariness, in its small charm and mildly involving subplots, in its refreshing seriousness and in its good turns from dependable character actors. At least until the ending that becomes a real test of the audience’s loyalty. I went with it, so unexpected that it almost circles back around to retroactively inevitable, but with an ending this out-of-left-field, your reactions may vary.

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