How Memento gave its viewers short-term reminiscence loss

Seventeen years in the past, Memento launched a large viewers to the mind-bending storytelling methods which have grow to be synonymous with Christopher Nolan’s movies. Although, for some purpose, Memento isn’t remembered as fondly or as reverently as the opposite movies within the director’s oeuvre. As a rule, audiences look again on the movie as one prolonged gimmick—a narrative that’s made extra fascinating on account of the truth that it’s advised backwards. However within the newest installment of Classes From The Screenplay, we see that what may doubtlessly be dismissed as gimmickry is definitely a powerful feat of filmmaking that retains the viewers concurrently engaged and confused, similar to the movie’s protagonist.

Whereas writing the movie, Nolan struggled to give you a approach to “give the viewers the expertise of not with the ability to bear in mind issues,” so they’d see the world from the attitude of Man Pearce’s character, Leonard, who suffers from anterograde amnesia. By structuring the film as a collection of scenes advised in reverse order, the viewers members begin every new scene in a state of confusion (similar to Leonard), however because the scene performs out, they’re given clues and context for the scene that instantly preceded it, which chronologically occurred after it. All of this leads to a movie through which every successive scene not solely gives solutions to small questions like “How did he get right here?” or “When did he take that Polaroid?” but additionally seeds in clues for bigger questions like “Why did he kill Teddy?” and “Who’s John G?”

Realizing that a completely backwards film would get tedious, Nolan makes use of a collection of black-and-white scenes advised in chronological order as a spine for the movie. These scenes present backstory for our essential character whereas giving the viewers one thing to floor themselves with whereas being repeatedly thrown 10 to 15 minutes again in time. So, in actuality, Memento is greater than a movie advised backwards. It’s half a movie advised backwards and half a movie advised forwards that someway meets within the center, which is definitely on the finish. Because the video says, “The truth that the movie makes as a lot sense because it does is a really spectacular feat.”

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