In the new drama, Remember Me, Robert Pattinson plays Brando playing Dean playing a tormented soul; the critics are mixed on his prowess but all seem to agree that it’s nice to see the Twilight heartthrob with some color in his cheeks for a change.
Brooding, detached and chain-smoking, Tyler Hawkins (Pattinson) would like nothing more than to be left alone to sulk. But he can’t stand by and watch his estranged father (Pierce Brosnan), whom he blames for his older brother’s suicide, ignore his little sister Caroline any more than he can a police sergeant wrongly arrest an innocent victim.
Egged-on by a friend one afternoon, Tyler asks-out fellow NYU student Ally Craig (Emilie de Ravin). Ally’s the daughter of the bitter cop that roughed-up Tyler a few nights prior and ostensibly it’s payback. She doesn’t know that, of course, which is just as well because Tyler’s heart is not in it, anyway. The two fall for each other, none-the-less.
Meanwhile, Tyler’s father, who runs a successful Wall Street legal firm, continues to disappoint his family. This time by standing-up Caroline, whose art exhibit he promised to attend. That and Caroline’s catty classmates are too much for Tyler who only lately reflects on Gandhi’s words that, “whatever you do in life will be insignificant, but it’s very important that you do it.” What he does next, however, is far from insignificant and when it’s all over father and son are not just both redeemed, they’re transformed.
The biggest surprise in Remember Me is Robert Pattinson who is remarkable – even if a lot of that wonderment comes from the low expectations you go in with. Pattinson carries most of the weight, but doesn’t go it alone. Girlfriend Emilie de Ravin, cop Chris Cooper, cliché goofy buddy Tate Ellington, precious little sister Ruby Jerins – they all contribute. Pierce Brosnan, though, stands out. You hate him up until the third act when he announces that he’s going to “make a few calls” and rain down mercilessly on the school board (trust me, it’s more dramatic than it sounds), then you realize he’s not such a bad guy, after all. And his Brooklyn accent? Fuggetaboutit!
At the end of the day, it’s all about the plot (unless you’re a Pattinson fan in which case it’s all about the hair). I found it immediately engaging (the plot, not the hair) and even when it moved slowly, it never felt long. It is sappy at times, but never hokey.
It’s a good film that’ll be remembered.
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