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Goldfish Memory
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Reviews & Ratings for
Goldfish Memory More at IMDbPro »

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16 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

There's significance to the title...

Author: Havan_IronOak from NYC/FL
14 May 2004

In Dublin Tom, a 40 something literature lecturer, tries it on with any of his female students that are gullible enough. His standard pickup line involves telling them about the reported shortness of a goldfish's memory. Supposedly its only three second which means that as the fish swims around its bowl, by the time it returns to where it started it's all new again and ready for discovery.

It's Irish whimsy like that that help him get into these girl's knickers. Clara, his latest conquest takes it badly when he moves on and she decides to try women. The woman she tries is Angie a newscaster. Meanwhile Angie's best mate is Red, a gay guy who works days as a bicycle messenger. Our cyclist has romantic issues of his own as he becomes smitten with David the hunky but straight bartender whose girlfriend is giving HIM grief...

Yes, it's a light hearted merry-go-round of romantic entanglements and while none of the stories are terribly touching or new, they are passably written and enjoyable. The characters are charming and pleasant to look at if none too deep.

If you liked the lecturer's goldfish line, this movie may be perfect for you. By the time it's over you may be able to start it again having forgotten these light and agreeable but none too memorable story lines.

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16 out of 23 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant Cinematography of a Wonderful Dublin Film

Author: h-holstine from From Northern California
2 February 2005

This is an outstanding film, in every detail. It starts off leaving the viewer a little mixed up, with a mixing of different characters, but soon settles down as all the main actors start to come to life. By the end of the film all the main characters finally make decisions about important matters that affects the rest of their lives.

Ken Byrne makes his debut as a cinematographer, and should win "Rookie of the Year" honors, if there was such an award. His shots and locations, both inside and outside, are the best I have ever seen. I am a photographer, with 40 years experience, and have seen thousands of movies, but this one takes the cake.

Jean Butler, who we all remember from her leading role in Riverdance, makes her first appearance as just an actress, and does NOT dance at all. A wonderful film that only played in Ireland, but deserves a MUCH larger audience. Rent this movie, if you can!

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12 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Wow that feels good!

Author: headinclouds7 from Switzerland
25 May 2005

Man, if you still hesitate to watch this movie go ahead! I've seen quite a bunch of movies about love and relationships in homosexuality and heterosexuality, and this one is excellent. Behind the fact that it's very funny and entertaining, the cast is just perfect, the characters couldn't be more into their parts. The story is touching and true, never boring because it's always renewing when you don't expect it to. It gives you a good taste of life and its turmoils with a delightful sense of humor. It's refreshing really! Too bad there aren't more quality movies like this one... Thank you for this (too short) moment of enjoyment and laughters.

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6 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Simply Complex

Author: jlove715 from Los Angeles, California
6 November 2007

This movie tells the simple yet complicated story of love; the quest, the journey, the conquest, the defeat. The characters are well developed and so is the story line. I also enjoy the way the movie is shot. The director chose to do some interesting things when it came to angles and symbolism. It is truly an amazing piece of work. I'm an African-American lesbian from Brooklyn, New York and I can relate to this movie, which takes place in Dublin, Ireland with an all white cast. That just goes to show how it's told in a manner that crosses all cultural and racial lines. I own it on DVD, which also comes with a soundtrack disc. It truly is my favorite movie and everyone I show it to falls in love with the movie as well. It's a must see, so see it already.

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

an wry and enjoyable pansexual rom com

Author: Colette Corr from Melbourne, Australia
14 March 2006

Goldfish Memory is a multi-layered romantic comedy in the style of Bedrooms and Hallways from Irish writer/director Liz Gill.

When Clara sees her boyfriend Tom kissing Isolde, it sets off a chain of romance and heartbreak that goes full circle. Clara pursues and dumps TV journalist Angie who then falls for horticulturist Kate via a one-night stand with gay bike courier pal Red. Meanwhile philanderer Tom has a rocky road to love, while Isolde decides to explore her options.

Gay, lesbian, straight, bisexual, it seems that when it comes to love, some of these characters suffer from a three-second Goldfish Memory. While some seek commitment, others just can't help themselves.

Goldfish Memory is a well-paced, humorous and lighthearted film that switches between story lines smoothly. Although it's not original enough to become a classic, it's a great date flick, with solid ensemble performances.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Waters of March

Author: Benedict_Cumberbatch from Los Angeles, CA
24 January 2008

This 'little' Irish film takes its title from the reported shortness of a goldfish's memory, which supposedly lasts only three seconds - enough time for it to swim around its bowl, and then its memory starts over again. "Goldfish Memory" could be described as a less pretentious and more natural "Love Actually": an ensemble cast forms a mosaic of love and sex in Dublin. Writer/director Elizabeth Gill discusses gay, lesbian and straight relationships with humor and tenderness, never being heavy-handed or moralistic. She clearly is not concerned about being too deep or serious, but still manages to create some smart dialogue - particularly, a touching scene between Angie (Flora Montgomery), a lesbian reporter, and her best friend Red (Keith McErlean), at the beginning. Damien Rice (who'd become famous for the "Closer" soundtrack one year later - "Cold Water", by the way, was used in this movie first) and Lisa Hannigan singing Brazilian bossas both in English and Portuguese (with a very cute accent) in the soundtrack is a delightful surprise. A great Irish feel good movie. 8.5/10.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Absolute tripe

Author: ibetnoonehasthisname from Ireland
28 March 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This steaming pile is the reason that there's no Irish Film industry. I swear to you, I have seen better acting in Primary School plays, Sean Campion in particular is atrocious. it speaks volumes that the pinnacle of his career has been Hollyoaks. Absolutely horrid, every line he utters sounds like a Kerrygold commercial.

Low-budget or not, this film is also poorly shot and poorly directed, the whole thing looks like an episode of Nationwide. The lighting in particular was awful. Like I said, a low-budget is no excuse for substandard work. Because the whole film relied on natural or available light, light bulbs shine far too brightly as the camera compensates for the darkness of the scene, and it just ends up looking cheap. The creators were also obviously far too proud of composing the shots carefully as they lingered on them for so long. Slow edits, and poxy camera movements that come off as cheap...I mean, they even used that cross-dissolving sex scene gimmick twice... Then they just got trigger-happy with Dutch angles. It really says a lot about this film when it bears one of the hallmarks of the Batman TV-series...

There's just so much crap here to sift through, I won't go into the wafer-thin characterisation and the fact that almost every character can become gay. They may be straight for most of the film, but all it takes is a wink and a few drinks and BANG! they're gay! And its not funny. Despite what anyone else here says, its not funny in the slightest, unless you find double-takes and shocked faces funny. I don't. And thats because I'm not 10. Or an idiot. If this is a comedy, then a bebo page is a literary masterpiece. Then again, the bebo generation probably thinks this film is "class"....

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A light movie that delivers on every level

Author: dhjhn from Derry, Ireland
29 January 2007

'Goldfish Memory' is a light, bright celebration of our hilarious tendency to learn nothing from experience. Like the goldfish with his 3-second memory, we plunge from one romantic disaster to the next, seemingly incapable of resisting the dizzy thrill of new romance whenever it comes our way. Focussing on a philandering German professor at Trinity College Dublin, who plies his female students with Rilke's poetry (possibly the most unlikely aphrodisiac in movie history - read some to help you sleep), the movie follows the misfortunes of an extended circle of related characters in a connected series of whirlwind romances. Hetero, bi or homosexual, some don't know who they are, one or two don't know where they are. This is Arthur Schnitzler's 'La Ronde' meets 'Love, Actually' and, with no pretensions to high art, is a colourful and poignant celebration of student life and love in the café and pub society of downtown Dublin, Europe's most fun city. Lead actress O'Shaugnessy is destined for great things.

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Goldfish Memory...It's more fun to watch your goldfish swim around in that little bowl

Author: jamesmccormack from United States
13 July 2008

I can sum up this movie with one word, "YAWN." Hardly interesting at any level, Goldfish Memory is a long, tedious look at the loves and loses of a group of Dubliners. And that would be group of people you have little reason to care about. I cannot understand where all these positive write ups came from - friends of the producers no doubt.

This little production is bit better than most of the films showing on the "here!" channel. But that is not saying much. My best suggestion is to turn the film into a drinking game. Down a shot everything the director cuts to a shot of a goldfish or goldfish bowl. You will be passed out on the floor in 20 minutes. And with a film like Goldfish Memory, you could consider that a blessing.

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

The film comes to a happy ending, so I guess that's a good thing. Really enjoyable!

Author: James O'Brien from Australia
6 January 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It would be far too simplistic to label Goldfish Memory as Love Actually meets Queer As Folk (US Version) but there are elements of both productions in this movie.

In many ways, this was the movie that "Love Actually" could have been. Unlike "Love Actually" which had too many plot lines going on, this film concentrates on three or four main plot lines and it does them well! But there are also elements of the US version of "Queer As Folk" with its emphasis on the common experience of gay and lesbian culture and the close friendships that gays and lesbians can experience. Mind you, there are shades of Go Fish when Angie describes the rather incestuous nature of a Dublin lesbian dinner party. Curiously enough, Red doesn't appear to have any gay male friends.

Actually, the two most rounded, and most interesting characters, were Red (played by Keith McErlean) and Angie (played by Flora Montgomery).

And while I really enjoyed seeing the intimacy of their friendship, I was a little disappointed when the plot line went down a predictable path. Actually, a few of the plot lines went down the predictable path and that's what I thought was a weakness in this movie.

And because of the predictability, although there are moments of genuine emotion I wasn't especially "touched" by the movie. I also thought there were moments of great implausibility; is everyone in Dublin bisexual, gay or lesbian or at least "on the turn"? The one straight male in this is Tom (played by Sean Campion, a 40 something university lecturer - who bore a remarkable resemblance to a younger Neil Tennant from The Pet Shop Boys - is the real loser. The movie starts and finishes with his tragic pickup lines about the memories of goldfish and reading Goethe in German (didn't Mouse like that in Tales Of The City, too?).

Although the version screened in Perth at the Gay & Lesbian Film Festival looked like it had been videotaped off television - complete with screen problems! - the scenery of Dublin was terrific and made me want to go back there. I'd forgotten there were so many bridges over the Liffey.

Despite some misgivings, I think it's a good film. And I can really relate to the film's central premise that, as far as love is concerned, human beings are just like goldfish which are said to have three-second memories... we forget how hard love can be when we fall in love again.

Anyway, the film comes to a happy ending, so I guess that's a good thing. Really enjoyable!

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