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A baffling script that somehow works as cinema----temporarily
Quebec in winter is a powerful setting for this, the umpteenth amnesia movie. Nothing makes sense for the hero after someone tries to pull the plug on him while he's in a coma and only succeeds in waking him up. We are equally baffled, and frankly we are not enlightened much in the ensuing 90 minutes. When Alex demands of his doctor why his personal circle is behaving in completely contradictory fashion, we hang on his every word. "You are picking up on their deeper feelings" is all the doctor can offer. Evidently, he's as baffled as any of us. Alex does have a breakthrough of sorts, when he penetrates a deep memory that had nothing to do with him going into a coma, but occurred about 34 years earlier. Er, as I said...it's baffling. Other big-grossing and award-winning pictures have had ludicrously unsatisfactory denouements, e.g. Clint Eastwood's Mystic River, but Memoires Affectives takes the cake. How the director managed to persuade the producers to finance this confusing confection is not clear. Probably Roy Dupuis could appear for 90 minutes asleep in bed and someone would cough up a few million. In spite of being so utterly daft, the picture sucks you in engagingly for its duration --- but don't waste any time trying to work it out afterwards.
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