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|Index||19 reviews in total|
I had never heard of "Memory" till I purchased it on a 4-movie "Horror
Collector's Set" DVD from the bargain bin. In addition to "Memory," the
other three movies on the DVD were Tobe Hooper's "Mortuary," "Wages of
Sin" and "Bloody Mary." "Mortuary" wasn't too bad but the other two
films were flat-out awful, so by the time I sat down to watch "Memory"
I really wasn't expecting much. Imagine my surprise when it turned out
to be the best movie on the DVD, even though it certainly isn't what I
would consider a "Horror" movie. "Memory" is a fine mystery/suspense
thriller along the lines of a James Patterson story (think "Kiss the
Girls" or "Along Came A Spider") with some occasional horrific
Billy Zane of "Titanic" stars as Taylor, a researcher for a pharmaceutical company who is accidentally exposed to an unknown drug compound while in Brazil for a convention. When he returns home to Boston, he begins having disturbing flashbacks of a masked person in a black cloak, dark forests, and little girls. Disturbed by these visions, he begins to do some research on the powder he touched and it turns out that Indian tribes in the Amazon have been using it for thousands of years to see other people's memories, through their own eyes. Unfortunately for Taylor, the person whose memories he's now "sharing" happens to be a psycho who's been kidnapping and killing little girls for the past 30 years without being caught. With the help of his artist girlfriend (Tricia Helfer of "Battlestar Galactica") and two family friends (the late great Dennis Hopper and Ann-Margret) he takes it upon himself to unravel the mystery and stop the masked kidnapper before he can claim yet another new victim. As his investigation moves along, it seems that the killer also has a connection to Taylor's past that he has never suspected.
Though this was obviously a low budget film (from a first time writer/director) "Memory" is a nice looking film and a tight, fast moving effort. The veteran cast turns in fine performances all around, and the twists and turns of the plot will keep the viewer guessing till its creepy finale in the kidnapper's lair. This is also the coolest set piece in the movie, a cavernous building loaded with scary looking mannequins and bizarre scrawlings on the walls. I thought I had the ending figured out early on but as it turns out, the filmmakers threw me a curve ball that I wasn't expecting. Horror fans will probably be disappointed by this flick (as I said, it really doesn't belong on a "Horror" DVD) but fans of psychological thrillers should be pleased with this little known gem.
"Memory" can apparently be found cheaply wherever bargain DVDs are sold so I would recommend checking it out. Just a tip, if you happen to buy it on the same "Horror Collector's Set" that I did, skip the other three movies on it and go right to this one.
After accidentally touching an unknown drug, Taylor Briggs (Billy Zane)
begins having flashbacks to the life of someone else -- a child
abductor who has never been caught. Can he put the pieces together and
solve the crime before the kidnapper abducts again?
I have said in other reviews that Billy Zane really makes a movie. My trust in that statement was fractured after seeing "The Mad" (though I don't blame Zane), but once more restored after this picture. He appears in practically every scene. While not the greatest film you'll see (it has a very made-for-TV or straight-to-video feel about it), the plot is interesting and the characters likable. Billy Zane, of course, helps tremendously by being the evil twin of Ben Affleck.
It also helps to have Dennis Hopper play Taylor's foster father Max Lichtenstein, although his only purpose in this film is to show up at random times with a few beers and cigars. Oh well, he's still better here than he was in "Land of the Dead". "Max," says Hopper, "is a guy whose wife has died and he's sort of coasting through life a bit like a ghost. But it's a really warm relationship that he has with Taylor -- something genuine and real." That's a good quote. And Hopper knows Max, if the rumors are true, because he spent weeks studying his lines despite being a relatively small character -- residents around town would catch him in restaurants reading. Tricia Helfer was also pretty decent, though not particularly noteworthy.
This was a plot-driven film, to be sure. Rated R for "language and frightening images", there's no nudity or gore here. The frightening images, as far as I can tell, are just a person in a mask. Nothing really disturbing. There's a photo album that may be thought as disturbing by some. I thought it was deviously brilliant.
The plot was excellent because it's not only a thriller but also a mystery (a race against time to solve a child abduction case, while the lead also must find how he's connected to the kidnapper). There's even sub-mysteries (such as how the lead's girlfriend knows about the kidnappings) that might leave you guessing. And random shout-out: nice use of a cell phone as a flashlight. We've all been there.
I give this film credit because I thought I had it figured out before it was half over. My two guesses about certain plots were close, but ultimately both wrong. There's a few twists you won't see coming. The "big reveal" is disappointing only if you're being overly critical, as they sort of dump it all on you at once for no reason. But I thought it was okay.
I wouldn't have rented this film on my own, but having been asked to review it, I'm glad I did. If you're scanning the new releases and find this, you could do much worse. I saw it with two friends and we all seemed to enjoy it, so it caters to a wider range than just myself. And Billy Zane and Dennis Hopper are in it. Worth checking out if you want a story different from your usual serial killers and splatter films.
I almost did not rent this movie due to the art on the DVD jacket,
which is similar to the horror genre, but I gave it a look-see just in
case. I'm glad I did.
Even though I had the baddie figured out early on in the movie, I found the concept of genetic memories with a different slant in a movie to be interesting. I wish more had been added into this subject regarding the powder and the Indians, which would have given this movie more of a smart flash.
Regardless, I did enjoy the performances of Zane, Margaret and Hopper. I was pleasantly surprised to see Zane with more meat on his bones and is becoming a more seasoned actor. Of course, from a female perspective, I certainly didn't turn away when he took his shirt off! He's still hot. I think that this threesome made a very good complimentary combination together, and would like to see other movies similarly cast.
The movie didn't really drag too much in my opinion as other comments made here. There are more visuals than explaining dialog/narrative, which were all very well done. If more dollars could have gone into this movie, it would have been a bigger box office seller. The talent was definitely there in the casting, directing, audio and visuals, but stops a wee short in lacking the extra substance, such as what I've mentioned ... something more about the genetic memory angle.
All in all, I liked this movie and recommend the rental fee, and enjoy some popcorn.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a neat little movie, if you ignore some of the obvious clichés
and TV movie pacing. But it is NOT for gore-hounds and ppl turned on by
SAW type violence.
Given of course that you don't let logic come in the way...as the plot is convoluted and the 'scientific' theories pretty laughable...plus a somewhat predictable ending...plus the movie is longer than judgment day...we dozed off about 5 diff times Glad we stayed till the end tho. Because what this movie has going for it is a return to an older, more conventional serial killer storyline. With good atmospheric buildup, and thankfully minimal gore, so that you could at least think about watching it with family. Don't know about you, but I'm kinda getting sick and tired of all the SAW and HOSTEL ripoffs.
Don't expect much from the actors. For those who've tracked their careers, Billy Zane and D Hopper have been collecting paychecks for a while now, and they sleepwalk thru their roles here as well. Oldtimer Ann Margret puts in a decent performance, tho the role hardly requires acting ability.
5 out of 10
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For a first time director / producer / writer team this is not a bad
movie. It has its rough parts, it is not a polished as a production
from a major studio or development group. But that is some of its
The story holds together throughout the movie and builds to a climax and letdown. The DVD extra features explain how long the process was to make this movie. The writer director story boarded the whole thing. The production values are very high for their budget. They shot what they needed and did not waste much time on extra footage.
The plot twist at the end was somewhat confusing because of all the visuals that you had to catch to understand that the killer was not his father but his mother, and the person he thought was his mother was not. Once those concepts fall into place the ending becomes clear. This movie needs to be seen a couple of times to catch the subtle clues.
This is not guerrilla film making - with a single set and some of the filming done on the cuff. A good example semi-guerrilla film making is the film by Darren Aronofsky in 2000 "Requium for a Dream": that cost $4.5 million 5 years ago. Aronofskys' first non-student movie was Pi in 1998. It was done in black and white for $60k in 1998.
An interesting start of a career, lets see what they can bring us in the future.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This movie was a great first offering from a first time director.
The casting may not have been spectacular, but Billy Zane was very believe as a sympathetic lead character. Dennis Hopper and Ann-Margaret provided a high level of class and coolness to their characters.
Using genetic memories as a basis for a high concept thriller is fresh and interesting.
Dealing with the pain of his Alzhiemer's afflicted mother, Taylor Briggs (Billy Zane) is a genetic researcher in desperate search for a cure. Through his research, he stumbles across a mysterious powder from the Amazon rain forest. This powder can unleash the memories of your ancestors. After accidentally ingesting the powder, Taylor relives the memories of his dead father, memories that frighten him, it appears that his father was a serial killer. Taylor uses the clues from his memories to figure out who he really is as well as save the lives of those effected by his father's murderous ways.
I love this type of movie, and I loved this one, and would highly recommend it. Anyone who disagrees is just smoking rope.
While in Salvador, Brazil, in a medical congress, the researcher of
Alzheimer Dr. Taylor Briggs (Billy Zane) and his colleague and friend
Dr. Deepra Chang (Terry Chen) are invited to visit a local hospital.
They find a patient from Amazon with a unique case of tumors in the
memory cells, and while examining him, the glove of Taylor ruptures and
his finger touches a strange powder. Taylor has visions from 1971, and
once back to Boston, he finds that he has genetically stored memories
of a serial killer of little girls activated by the powder.
"Memory" is a messy and absurd thriller. I was attracted by the cast, with Dennis Hopper, Ann-Margret and Billy Zane, but I in the end I was absolutely disappointed with the coincidences and the insane and totally unbelievable story. For Brazilians, it is hilariously ridiculous the geographic confusion of the screenplay, with a sick patient coming from Amazon to Salvador (why?); Taylor and Deepra are in a congress in Salvador (there is a footage of the city), they go to a bar and the director uses footage of the front of "Barril 1800", in Ipanema, Rio de Janeiro instead of a local bar; the interior of the bar is probably in a studio. My vote is four.
Title (Brazil): "Alucinações" ("Hallucinations")
The cast members explained in interviews that the main theme of Bennett
Davlin's "Memory" is the idea of seeing something through someone
else's eyes, as the main character (Billy Zane) does: an otherwise
benevolent person suddenly has memories of committing horrible acts.
This is not a slasher movie or home invasion movie. There's the issue
of what has been hidden. Parts of the movie did trick me a little bit,
and I found it to be a pretty clever flick. It's not frightening or
anything, but I liked how they laid everything out.
OK, so we could be cynical and say that this is a totally improbable story. So what? The movie is understood to be improbable. I still say that it's a very clever plot. Above all, it's great to see Dennis Hopper (RIP) and Ann-Margret still playing such interesting roles. Worth seeing.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Bennet Davlin both co-wrote & directed this semi-interesting, somewhat
intriguing mystery drama. For a first effort it is not too bad, Its not
too good either.
(note: a 7 rating in my book is in the fair to good range)
To its credit there are 3 semi-major stars heading this cast.
Billy Zane--- He still has a good looking body, He is a capable actor. Ann-Margaret, she has been a star for over 45 years & still is pleasing to the eye. also on hand is Dennis Hopper He has been around the sound stages since before GIANT that was 53 yrs ago.,He is still a fine actor. I always liked these 3 players, This is perhaps the reason I rented this film.
It is a 2005 movie & only released on DVD this past March (2 months ago). I do not think it had a theatre release.. This is really a B film worthy of a co-feature on a double bill.
The story is somewhat confusing, but still interesting, It is also a mystery & a mild horror film, To its credit IT IS NOT A GORE-FEST.
Interesting camera-work, with a good score, It runs a fast 98 minutes, however it still could have been a bit shorter.
I must mention 2 of the other players.
Tracy Helfer from TV (Battlestar Gallatica). She is pretty to look at & may be a good actress in time.
All films of this type have a comic relief character, who is the stars sidekick. His name is Terry Chen. A Chinese-American actor with a great smile & good comic timing, thankfully he is not a stereotype like they used to be, He plays a Doctor friend of our hero who happens to have a great comic wit. I want to see more films he is in.
Note this is not a really good movie, BUT its is not a bad one, I was not too surprised who the villain was.(note; I will say this it is not the first person you may think it is.)
Ratinss **1/2 (out of 4) 78 points (OUT of 100) IMDb 7 ( out of 100
Seems they listen to Coast to Coast am. All the subjects, such as genetic memories,sitting with the dead, powders used for trances, serial killers, strange family connections. The customers of tribes that still live in south America. Well all of this and more is covered by C2Cam. I felt the tensions created, but I did guess that a woman was the killer. I also wondered if the artist was the child that escaped. Others have given this a bad review. I would ask them to research some of the actual work on many of the subjects raised in the film. I enjoyed the film. It was not rushed, the timing was good and the problem I had is the advert breaks, they came at the wrong moments.
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