If you haven’t ever felt compelled to watch Christopher Nolan’s 2000 cinematic masterpiece Memento, do yourself a favor and remedy that now before a planned remake muddies the waters. Nominated for two Oscars (Best Writing and Best Editing) and consistently ranked among both fans’ and critics’ favorite films, Memento was one of the last of Nolan’s films before he took on the Batman trilogy that made him a household name. Starring Guy Pearce as a man who suffers from a debilitating memory problem but attempts to solve his wife’s murder, Memento is one of those rare films that offers up a sophisticated plot mirrored by superb editing of a non-linear storytelling format, alongside fantastic performances from all levels of the cast, including Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Jorja Fox, Stephen Tobolowsky and Mark Boone Junior. It’s a delightfully dark film that offers a rewarding experience every time you watch it. Sadly, it’s this very quality that the producers now point to as reasoning behind their remake.
AMBI Pictures, which acquired the rights to Memento along with a number of other cult classic films, is set to finance and produce a remake. Here’s what AMBI’s Andrea Iervolino said about the original film and the flawed reasoning behind a planned remake:
“’Memento’ has been consistently ranked as one of the best films of its decade. People who’ve seen ‘Memento’ 10 times still feel they need to see it one more time. This is a quality we feel really supports and justifies a remake. The bar is set high thanks to the brilliance or [sic] Christopher Nolan, but we wouldn’t want it any other way.”
This is veiled language that basically means: Memento was popular and financially successful and we own the remake rights so let’s milk this property for all that we can. If AMBI had the rights to Citizen Kane, I wouldn’t be surprised if that classic film would be greenlit for a remake as well. I’m not totally opposed to an adaptation of Nolan’s incredible film – say, a limited TV series or some other unique take – since it’s such a rich storytelling idea, but a flat-out remake is just plain stupid.
So watch out. If Memento 2: Leonard through the Looking Glass is a box office success, you may next see a remake of Cruel Intentions or Donnie Darko in your news feed since AMBI Pictures now owns their rights as well.
Watch the trailer for the original Memento below:
Here’s the synopsis for Memento:
Leonard (Guy Pearce) is tracking down the man who raped and murdered his wife. The difficulty, however, of locating his wife’s killer is compounded by the fact that he suffers from a rare, untreatable form of memory loss. Although he can recall details of life before his accident, Leonard cannot remember what happened fifteen minutes ago, where he’s going, or why.