Review: Remember, B
Rated R, 95 minutes
The powerful, accessible new drama from acclaimed filmmaker Atom Egoyan ("The Sweet Hereafter") features two terrific performances from Oscar-winners, especially a painful one from Christopher Plummer. With help from a fellow Holocaust survivor Max (Martin Landau), widower Zev Guttman (Plummer) who struggles with memory loss, embarks on a cross-country odyssey to find the former Nazi guard responsible for the deaths of their family members. Crafted superbly by Egoyan with a screenplay by Benjamin August, writing his first feature film, "Remember" is an absorbing reason to often forget, though you won't forget the film's shocking final minutes as it finally unravels the true reason for Plummer's cross-country trip. Along the way, the dementia-ridden Zev encounters repeated loss at having to relive his wife's passing or even where or who he is, and Plummer perfectly captures Zev's emotional struggle at day-to-day living within the context of his larger mission - just remember enough to get by. There is one particularly intense episode with a former Nazi's son (memorably played by "Breaking Bad's" Dean Norris), who proves to be much worse than his father ever was. August's script has a few minor plot holes, most of which I can't reveal here without revealing the final plot twist, which Egoyan executes well, though I'm most surprised at how far and how quick Zev moves across the country without much notice from the authorities. Once Zev finally does remember with painful anguish his awful past, he realizes the true purpose of his mission. "Remember" isn't an uplifting film but a poignant, powerful that will stay with you long after you leave the theater. Worth seeing for the excellent performances from both Plummer and Landau, with less footage than Plummer but whose wheelchair-bound Max is fully in control of the situation much more than you might think.