Memento  (2000)

IMDB Rating 8.5/10  113 min - Rated 15 Thriller | Crime

Stars:            Guy Pierce,  Carrie-Anne Moss            Director:      Christopher Nolan

In a cinematic world full of re-makes, re-imaginings and all out copies, it is rare to find a movie as original and thought provoking as Memento. Guy Pearce plays Leonard Shelby, a man searching for the man who raped and murdered his wife. Shelby has a problem however; since his wife's death he suffers from a rare disorder that means that he cannot retain new memories.  As a result, he must make copious notes, take photos of people he meets, and even tattoo his body with hints in order to keep track of the on-going investigation.  Christopher Nolan lays out what he has in store for us from the opening shot when we see a Polaroid fading from fully developed to completely blank. Nolan plunges the viewer into Shelby's shoes with a neat trick; while each scene is played chronologically, they are ordered in reverse. Hence the film starts at the story's conclusion and fills in the gaps as it `progresses' to the beginning. This makes watching the film a confusing experience and there is no neat payoff after the climax. All of the characters seem to have some level of duplicity and it is unclear who can be trusted; Shelby himself manipulates his own memories through the notes he makes.  To write-off the film as unfathomable, however, is to understate its intelligence and inventiveness. Solid performances by the cast as well as taut and stylish direction bring out the most from the rightly acclaimed screenplay. And if you are frustrated by the labyrinthine editing, the DVD of the film allows the scenes to be played chronologically.