Slow-burning Remember Me focuses on love, loss and almost everything in between. As Tyler (Robert Pattinson) approaches his 22nd birthday with a huge sense of trepidation his life takes an unexpected turn when his life converges with that of Ally (Emilie de Ravin)’s.
The film that unfolds after the first few harrowing moments of Remember Me is compelling. We watch as Ally witnesses her mother being shot in front of her after being mugged but are never made fully aware of the loss that Tyler grieves over. Being fed tid-bits throughout the film about his 22 year-old brother’s suicide we are instead provided with the fall-out such a devastating act can have on the family left behind. With his parents having split up in its wake, the siblings left behind have to fight for a place in their father (Pierce Brosnan)’s heart.
As Tyler tries to find his place in the world left behind by his brother he finds himself not fully enrolled in college and running into the wrong end of the law. The latter leads him (somewhat haphazardly) to Ally via her cop-father (Kevin McCarthy) when Tyler’s room mate Aidan (Tate Ellington) convinces Tyler to get his own-back for the bruises the Chief dealt to his face by dating Ally. Much against plan he falls in love with her and it;s only a matter of time before the foundations of their relationship outs itself.
Remember Me makes a marked change for Robert Pattinson’s career. Although still essentially a tale of romance, Remember Me‘s protagonist Tyler is far-removed from the brooding Edward from the Twilight franchise (this comparison is sure to crop up sooner later in any review of a Pattinson film released in the near future). Addicted to cigarettes and partying, Tyler is not a man who is sure what he wants from life and it makes a refreshing change. His narrated letters to his late brother offer insight to his inner-most feelings and thoughts and that adds an interesting dimension to the film. Criticised for being too sentimental and crammed too full of sad things, Remember Me manages to rise above such downfalls and offers an intriguing exploration of the link between love and loss.
Tyler’s relationship with his sister Caroline (Ruby Jerins) is heart-warming and although his protection of her in the film has been knocked by some reviewers their bond is acted well. Although the film sometimes falls down by being too introverted it no doubt has its charms. The developing relationship between Ally and Tyler is captivating and the characters portrayed have very real attributes and flaws. Some of the film’s turns may be clichéd or predictable (most of these relating to Tyler’s relationship with his father) but the film’s unexpected ending is extremely powerful – many may have claimed it as crass but it places the characters in the real world and epitomises the film’s message.
Remember Me ultimately comments on the heavy expectation to achieve something in life whilst subtly suggesting that people usually achieve more than they think without realising it. Blending romance with a continual undercurrent of loss, the film will no doubt divide opinion.
Best performance: Robert Pattinson and Ruby Jerins.
Best scene: Tyler being teased with the ‘bowl’ is fairly comedic in a natural way.
Best line: ‘if you could hear me I would say that our finger prints don’t fade from the lives we’ve touched’.
Watch this if you liked: The Notebook, Twilight
Remember Me is full of people faking their accents; Pattinson is from England, Brosnan is from Ireland whilst Emilie de Ravin is from Australia.