Sunday, 1 May 2011

Remember Me

Remember Me is an odd unexpected and sad film which will have upset the young weekend audience of cinema goers. It also took me time to understand what was happening even though I gave the film my undivided attention.

A mother and young daughter age 11 years are alone on a New York subway station waiting for a train when she senses danger with two black youths loitering appearing to be checking them out. One appears with a gun and she surrenders her handbag but resists giving her wedding ring which is later found at the scene. The two men get on the next train leaving the woman defiantly looking at the on the platform. The door opens and one of the men shoots the woman dead. Later her husband comes to scene and claims his daughter. It is not clear why the wife and girl were taking the subway at the kind of station and time which indicated a dangerous situation at the best of times. Without this incident the core story would have no basis.

We do not know if the two men were caught and punished and for a while we do not know the connection between this incident and opening section of the film after the credits except that it is ten years later. I am not sure of the sequence of events but there is family gathering at a graveside which we subsequently learn comprises Pierce Brosnan as the divorced father and wealthy businessman of the main subject of the film Tyler, University student (Robert Pattinson), his school age sister, his ex wife and her second husband. There is tension between father and Tyler, because he is not wearing a tie and hen over a meal at the family home. Tyler works at a bookstore and only attends university to keep his place without concern for grades or graduation.

Out clubbing Tyler gets involved in a late night street incident which involves the police and gets himself booked with his flatmate, also a university student. Tyler does not want his father involved but the room mate takes the initiative in order to protect his university place and future. At this stage in the film Tyler appears to be an obnoxious anti father anti authority young man without redeeming features or apparent cause. He is hostile to the involvement of his father in getting the matter sorted without criminal records. The only likeable thing about Tyler is that he has a good relationship with his young sister.

His flatmate discovers that the daughter of the detective with whom they had the problem also attends their university and devises a plan that one of them should seduce and then dump the girl in revenge. Tyler goes along with plan and they becomes friends with the room mate persuading the girl to go a party one evening where she gets drunk and sleeps it off in their flat resulting in an angry confrontation with her father when she returns the following morning and he hits her when she tells him to stop being overprotective. She turns to Tyler and his flat mate and this leads to Tyler and the girl having a loving relationship and disclosing their backgrounds to each other. The girl explains her father’s behaviour because of the murder of her mother and his failure to protect her. Later on Tyler’s 22nd birthday he introduces the girl to his father at a posh restaurant and the girl discloses she was a witness to the murder of her mother. Father is called away on business which angers Tyler once more. Tyler has disclosed that his elder brother who was a good musician committed suicide on his 22nd birthday

Then the situation takes a turn for the worse. The girl’s father finds out where she is and confronts Tyler who admits how the relationship started. He also admits the situation to the girl who goes off but they make up and the relationship strengthens. His young sister is having problems at school and Tyler intervenes landing himself in trouble with the police again but this time his father in impressed and the son is appreciative of father’s intervention. The son agrees to visit his father’s office to brief lawyers arranged for him. Father also decides to spend more time with his daughter and calls unexpectedly on her home and asks his wife’s permission to take her to school. At school a teacher has written on the notice board September 11th 2011. Father at his car looks to where crowds are running. The son is seen at the window of a building which turns out to be an office high up in one of the Trades Centre Towers. The girlfriend and flat mate receive a telephone call. Later father, ex wife and daughter are at another graveside anniversary. The girl friends have returned to live with her father but are now riding the subway again. The flatmate is hard at work at university sporting a Tattoo of the word Tyler.

So the moral is? Children should get on with their families and parents with their children and everyone should be true and fair to each other because we do not now what is around the corner in any of our lives! It is also a film which reminds that everyone who died on that fateful day has a family and their lives of individual experiences

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