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Remember Me

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3 out of 5

ROBERT Pattinson insists he’s not interested in making crowdpleasing movies that follow formula despite being part of one of the most successful film franchises – Twilight – of recent times.

Evidence of this can be found in Remember Me, an indie teen drama that tackles some heavyweight issues, and which he also serves as executive producer.

Taken at face value, Pattinson’s central portrayal of troubled, or brooding, teen Tyler isn’t that much of a stretch from his Edward persona. But look closer and there’s a lot more going on.

Tyler is a rebel with a cause… to be a good brother to his youngest sister and to make his father (Pierce Brosnan) atone for his part in his older brother’s suicide. He also wants none of the rich privileges that should be coming his way by virtue of his dad’s lucrative job on Wall Street.

His life begins to take on new impetus, however, when he meets fellow teenager Ally (Emilie de Ravin), a woman he agrees to pick up as a dare, but with whom he soon falls hopelessly in love with, particularly as the two have so much in common concerning the loss of loved ones and the role of parents in their lives.

Allen Coulter’s movie actually works on two levels: as an intimate family drama with a teen focus, and as a wider depiction of New York as a city in transition.

How much of an emotional wallop it carries depends on how much you know about it before going in… and we won’t spoil the surprises here!

But it’s a tale rooted in tragedy that may be a little too overbearing and downbeat for fans anticipating just another teenage love story.

For those prepared to give it a go, and enter somewhat cold, there is much to savour, not least in a convincing central performance from Pattinson and some nice chemistry between him and Ravin.

Brosnan, too, gets a grandstanding moment in the spotlight late on, while there’s typically strong support from the likes of Chris Cooper and Lena Olin.

If there are downsides – such as an annoying best friend, one too many tragedies along the way and a really generous 12A certificate given some of the more harrowing content – these should be offset by the film’s memorable conclusion, which should at the very least ensure you’ll remember it for some time afterwards.

So, while by no means a perfect movie, it’s a consistently intriguing one that’s well worth the emotional investment, especially from the younger audiences its undoubtedly targeted towards.

For Pattinson, meanwhile, it also suggests there is life beyond the Twilight franchise for the British actor.

Certificate: 12A
Running time: 113mins
UK DVD & Blu-ray Release: July 26, 2010