At the end of “The 20th Century,” many events triggered in the year 2000, the presidential election between George W. Bush & Al Gore. The Y2K incident at first, was gonna become a nuclear holocaust, but it didn’t happen. AOL was purchased by Time Warner for $162 billion. Dora The Explorer made its TV debut on Nick Jr. The first X-Men film paved the way of superhero films which became a trend during the following decade and it still continues.
The films were released in 2000 that went on to become masterpieces are Gladiator, Traffic, Almost Famous, Erin Brockovich, Cast Away, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Requiem For A Dream, O Brother Where Art Thou, American Psycho, & the one review I’m writing about is Memento.
Memento is the movie that launched the career of my favorite filmmaker of all time, Christopher Nolan, (The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception, Interstellar) along with his brother Jonathan Nolan. (who also co-wrote with his brother & developed HBO’s Westworld.)
At the time of its release, it became a groundbreaking film due to its non-linear storytelling and the reverse structure of the narrative. The movie was nominated for “Best Orignal Screenplay” at The Oscars.
To prepare for Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, I’ve decided to look back at Memento to see if it still holds up as a masterpiece.
I’ll have you know that this article doesn’t contain any big fat SPOILERS. You’re allowed to read it if you haven’t seen Christopher Nolan’s second film after his first one was Following.
Positive & Negative Qualities
Positive: The Premise is told in reverse chronological order. Make sure you pay attention to the scenes you’ll get easily lost.
TIP: The Black & White scenes are flashbacks while the scenes in color are told in reverse order.
The Acting was done by the main leads like Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, & Joe Pantoliano. They all did a terrific job for their respective performances.
The Story focuses on Guy Pearce’s character Leonard, a man with short-term memory loss, who’s trying to put all the clues together in order to track down his wife’s killer.
The Nolan Brothers at first, wrote the story to make it a standard linear story, until they rearranged the scenes to make them go out of order similar to Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, but Memento goes up to eleven on the non-linear element.
Christopher Nolan did an excellent job directing the film.
Jonathan Nolan & his brother Christopher, both did a neat job writing the screenplay together.
The Cinematography never suffered from technical flaws.
The Editing was normal, it was stable.
There’s an Easter Egg featuring a comic book store with the Batman & Superman logos on it. Guess who went on to write and direct his future magnum opus?
The film contains a few twists and turns. Won’t confess why, you’ll have to be a detective to figure this out.
The core themes depicted in this mystery thriller involves identity, loss, trust, and deception. Every single one was handled in a mature way.
Negative: It can be confusing sometimes if you’re not familiar with the reverse order.
TIP: Another easy way to help after watching the picture, is to look up a video or timeline of the events, in case you want figure it out.
The Final Verdict: A-
Memento is one of those experimental films that tries to be unique in its own way. At first, I got confused with some parts, until the ending helped me out on what exactly happened. If you’re a huge fan of Christopher Nolan like me, I highly recommend this gem.
P.S. Christopher Nolan if you’re reading this? I really enjoy you’re films, I’m a huge fan and I idolize you the most. You inspire me to come up with stories that don’t appeal to the Lowest Common Denominator or L.C.D. for short.
Joss Whedon mentioned that James Cameron is the Yoda of the film industry of inspires others to become a filmmaker/storyteller.
Mr. Nolan I would describe you as the Obi-Wan/Geopetto of the film industry, if it weren’t for Batman Begins, we would never have Casino Royale, Rise Of The Apes, Star Trek, among many others based on how you redefined Batman. Thank you for sharing your creativity and talent. I’m looking forward to seeing Dunkirk, two days before my birthday.