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Posts Tagged ‘Memento’

Movies with an amnesia theme have a special hold for me. I once woke up with amnesia. I say “once woke up” because it is still unclear if my skis hit a bump and I fell and was knocked out or if I fell because I passed out. Usually, if your skis stop, the momentum of your body would plant you face first. Trust me, I know this one. But, this time, I woke up on my back with a strange woman’s face hovering inches above mine; asking if I was alright.

Let me tell you, it was the strangest thing in the world to wake up a blank slate. I do not even remember thinking, “I wonder who I am.” I just did not know. I had no idea who I was, where I was, how long I was out with this woman in my face, or who I might or might not be with. And, for some reason, I did not even think to say, “Hey, you know what? I have no idea who I am.”

This would probably have been the smart thing to do. She could have gotten me help, instead, I heard a man ahead of me, yelling, “Are you alright?” I would also point out to him, later, that he did not come back to see if I was alright, but at the time my mind just said,

“Okay, I must be with him.  The woman didn’t seem like she knew me.” And, I got my butt up and skied down to him. He could have been Jack the Ripper and I would have followed him. Such are the fates of those with amnesia.

In Memento, the protagonist, Leonard Shelby, played by Guy Pearch, is like, Drew Barrymore, in 50 First Dates. They wake up every morning with a blank slate. They have anterograde amnesia. His brain is unable to store new memories. Unlike Drew Barrymore, Leonard has no one to be his memory for him, so each night he takes Polaroid pictures and makes notes to remind him of who to trust and who not to trust and what he is currently involved in doing. He even goes so far as to have this tattooed on his body.

In my case: I was not really upset about not knowing who I was. I guess, since I did not remember a reference point, I did not know this was odd.  I soon began asking questionsthough, “Where are we?” “Are we in Colorado?” (mountains and snow were the clue, but we weren’t in Colorado) “Do we live here?” Are my daughters here?”  Perhaps you never forget you have children – even if you have no idea what their names are. This did alert the man (who did happen to be my husband) to the fact that I was, in fact, not alright.

Memento is a mystery and an awesomely filmed one. I highly recommend it and must insist that you watch this movie in a totally quiet atmosphere; after the children are sound, sound asleep. You have to pay attention as it is filmed in reverse chronological order alternating with chronological order; and black and white alternating with color. And, that’s all I’m going to say because this is just an awesome must see movie that will stay with you for a long time. You could go to Wikipedia and find out the whole story, but please do not do this.

Rent it and discover it for yourself.

By the way, by the time I ran into a medic, on our way down the hill, my memory was back, although two days later I found out that I had fractured my arm and torn my rotator cuff.

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