In the summer of 2001, New York college student Tyler (Robert
Pattinson, The Twilight Saga) is still feeling lost from the
tragedy that has strained his relationship with his father when
he meets Ally (Emilie de Ravin, TV's "Lost"), a girl
who understands his pain. The last thing Tyler's looking for
is love, but through their passionate relationship, he finds
new possibilities for happiness. It's an unforgettable story
about the power of the heart, the strength of family, and the
importance of treasuring every day of one's life.
Robert Pattinson may be known to many as the vampire Edward Cullen, but before his Twilight days, Robert was the star of indie dramas like How to Be (2008) and Little Ashes (2008). So it really isnít surprising that Robert has chosen to return to the genre for his first film outside Twilight- in fact not just starring in it, but also serving as executive producer of this romantic drama. ďRemember MeĒ is the title, though its significance only becomes apparent in the final moments of the film.
These final moments, its twist ending as some may call it, is quite simply unexpected. It doesnít just sneak up on it so much as it pounces on you- and for this very reason, demands a repeat viewing just to appreciate the little details in the script by Will Fetters that you may have missed the first time round. Believe me, once you do, youíll realise how beautifully drawn this film actually is, and the attention that director Allen Coulter has lavished on it to make sure that it is worth the weight of its ending.
Many have found fault with it and called it emotionally manipulative- but this reviewer will readily admit that he found it especially poignant. To think about it, it is precisely because of how unexpected it is that people have found the ending so frustrating, but hey isnít life unpredictable that way? Donít worry, there are no spoilers here, just a word of advice to keep your mind open and let the film take you on its emotional journey.
That journey is the whirlwind, heady romance between twenty-something New Yorker Tyler Hawkins (Robert Pattinson) and Ally Craig (Emilie de Ravin), a schoolmate he dates after being put up to a bet by his roommate Aidan (Tate Ellington). Allyís father is the hard-ass sergeant Neil (Chris Cooper) who arrests Tyler after he steps in to help some musicians in a fight. Dating his unsuspecting daughter was supposedly payback, but of course Tyler will eventually fall in love with Ally.
But ďRemember MeĒ is more than just another teen romance- it is also about the lives of Tyler and Ally, two broken individuals who find solace in each otherís company. Tyler lives in the shadow of his older brotherís suicide, caring for his quiet sister Caroline (Ruby Jerins) and filled with pent-up anger at his emotionally distant father Charles (Pierce Brosnan). Ally, on the other hand, lives alone with her protective dad after her mother was shot point blank on the platform on a subway station right in front of her.
While its premise may not spring many surprises (right till the very end), Allen Coulter approaches the material with utmost respect and dignity for the situations and predicaments that his characters are in, never attempting to trivialise or condescend but taking care to make sure that they always feel authentic. He also deliberately paces the movie so his audience can identify and empathise with his characters, especially Tyler and his sister Caroline. Indeed, their brother-sister bond is particularly touching, and one can almost feel Tylerís indignation when he vents his anger at Carolineís classmates who have repeatedly bullied and taunted her.
The rawness of the emotions portrayed are enough to hook you in, just as the all-round excellent performances from its solid ensemble cast. Pierce Brosnan, Chris Cooper and Lena Olin are all uniformly excellent in their supporting roles, while Ruby Jerins often steals the show playing the vulnerable sister. But all eyes are of course on Pattinsonís first post-Twilight role and he does not disappoint. Freed from playing a character literally bound by the confines of the book, here he is allowed to define Tyler his own way and does a bravely commendable job portraying his characterís insecurities and anxieties.
And perhaps it is precisely because of our own insecurities and anxieties that we fail to appreciate the beauty of the filmís ending, that puts into perspective so plainly and so swiftly the significance and the insignificance of each moment that makes up our lives. By the time the ending rolls around, youíll not only come to understand the meaning of the title of the film, youíll also feel the magnitude of this very shocker.
SPECIAL FEATURES :
The Dolby Digital 2.0 offers decent stereo effects for a mostly talky picture. Picture is clear without any visible flaws.
by Gabriel Chong
on 7 Jul 2010