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The Forgotten (2004)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Horror, Mystery  |  24 September 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 56,081 users   Metascore: 43/100
Reviews: 444 user | 169 critic | 34 from Metacritic.com

After being told that their children never existed, a man and woman soon discover there is a much bigger enemy at work.



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6 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Kovaleski ...
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In New York City, Telly Paretta has been under the psychiatric care of Dr. Jack Munce for fourteen months, the therapy to help her deal with the grief associated with losing her nine year old son, Sam Paretta, one of six children in a plane that went missing, the plane and the bodies never recovered. In the words of Telly's husband, Jim Paretta, Telly has been holding onto the past like a "death grip", which has hindered her therapy. Telly does not appreciate that characterization as it makes it sound like Dr. Munce and Jim want her to forget Sam. Slowly, incidents make it seem like Telly is losing that grip on the past, until one day all physical evidence of Sam disappears, personal as well as public, such as all media stories of the plane disappearance. Subsequently, Jim and Dr. Munce try to explain to her that her therapy is to help her get over the delusion that she and Jim have/had a son. As Telly alone goes on a search for any evidence of the existence of Sam, the only person ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense thematic material, some violence and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

24 September 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Misteriosa obsesión  »

Box Office


$42,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,022,111 (USA) (24 September 2004)


£2,020,775 (UK) (17 December 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Nicole Kidman was originally attached to star. See more »


After the alien's attempt to make Telly forget her son fail, he is taken and everything is returned to normal in which the kids have returned to the world along with Ash Corell after he was taken. Anne Pope was taken as well yet her fate is left unknown. See more »


[first lines]
Dr. Jack Munce: How much time did you spend at the dresser compared to last week?
Telly Paretta: Less.
Dr. Jack Munce: How much less?
Telly Paretta: I don't know exactly.
Dr. Jack Munce: You wanna make a guess, roughly, for the week?
Telly Paretta: Oh, not even an hour a day.
See more »


Featured in Remembering 'The Forgotten' (2005) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Finally, a thriller in 2004 that delivers

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.

71 of 119 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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The whole movie is about living with paranoid-schizophre nia...... hugh_jass22
sucked into the sky briansmith_91
worst movie I've ever seen fyalley
The aliens travel millions of light years to................... .... karm78
Incredibly scary. Seriously. arsalhyder18-1
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