A grieving mother, Telly Paretta, is struggling to cope with the loss of her 9-year-old son. She is stunned when her psychiatrist and her husband tell her that she has created eight years of memories of a son she never had. But when she meets the father of one of her son's friend who is having the same experience, Telly embarks on a mission to prove her son's existence and her sanity. Written by
Now THIS is what I want from a thriller. I had high hopes for this movie, and for the most part it delivers. The story grabs you from the start, and what I like is that nothing is revealed too soon. The movie pulls you along and keeps things nice and subtle until BAM it hits you with an uppercut. The pace smooths out and then WHAM, a right hook to the jaw. Pretty much the same method my mom used to employ to keep me on my toes.
The big mystery surrounds Telly's son. She clearly remembers him, and she has a difficult time dealing with his apparent death. About a year ago, he boarded a plane that was bound for camp, but the plane was never heard from again. Soon, all evidence of her son's existence begins to disappear. His image has vanished from a picture, photo albums are now empty, and a home video shows nothing but static.
Is somebody trying to mess with Telly's memory? Is her husband (Edwards) in on it? What is her shrink's involvement? Is she crazy, or is it everybody else around her who's lost it? Has Anthony Edwards started to regret leaving ER yet? Or am I confusing him with Julianna Margulies?
When Telly meets up with Ash Correll (West), she realizes that he's forgotten about his daughter, who was also on the plane with her son. It's at this point she's convinced that she isn't crazy, so she seeks to find out exactly what is going on. I love how the characters don't know who they can trust, and neither does the audience. Even characters who are attempting to help must be looked at with suspicion. You are to question everybody at all times!
The acting is very solid. You won't find my name in any Julianne Moore fan clubs (although I was once a member of the Bon Jovi Secret Society), but I have to admit she does a very good job here. And I'd never seen Dominic West before (because I typically avoid snoozers such as Mona Lisa Smile like Richard Simmons avoids women), but I thought he was great. Both characters react in situations exactly like you want them to. They're two distraught parents trying to find out what happened to their children, and they're willing to do what it takes. I don't want to spoil anything, so I'll leave it at that.
I definitely recommend you see this at the theater because there are two jump scenes that quite simply have to be seen on the big screen and heard with the best sound system possible. I'm talking two of the better jump scenes I've seen in a while. Stephanie doesn't jump much (even at times when I'm hoppin' like a giddy school girl), but she was even jolted out of her seat. Well, she didn't literally go flying out of her seat like a circus freak, but you know what I mean. One of the scenes caused her to jump and clench my arm. Poor thing hurt her hand on my bicep though.
Comparisons to The X-Files and The Twilight Zone are accurate, but don't listen to the movie snobs claiming it feels like a "mediocre" episode of one of the two. Keep in mind, this isn't the kind of thriller that will have you trying to figure out the plot for days afterward. It's not gonna make you think like Memento, and it's not gonna shock you or disturb you like The Butterfly Effect. It's simply gonna keep you guessing and entertained.
The Forgotten is a solid thriller that delivers a good mystery and some of the best jump scenes I've seen in a while. If you wanna cause yourself heartache and nitpick over some minor plot holes, then go ahead and be a little curmudgeon. But what's the point? Allow yourself to be entertained for an hour and a half. It won't hurt. This is a very good date movie, but guys, do a few reps beforehand because your gal might be grabbing your arm quite a bit, and it's best if that's not an embarrassing situation for you.
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