So many critics mistakenly assumed The Forgotten wasn’t worthy of public consumption just because it was released in September, usually a month for studio to dump their leftovers into the market. This film definitely had the goods to deliver a 20 million dollar plus weekend opening and should continue to sustain audiences for years to come.
Oscar®-winning actress Julianne Moore stars as Telly, a unique mother experiencing the recent loss of her son Sam. Her husband, played by former ER TV star Anthony Edwards, and psychologist, Dr. Munce, played by Gary Sinise, have a different view of her loss. It’s bad enough to experience one of the worst losses any one could imagine, but it’s even worse when people close to you doubt you and the circumstances surrounding the death. “It’s just the memory doing its job,” Dr. Munce says to Telly. “The mind needs help in letting the thing go.”
Telly eventually finds herself displaced from her familiar home and seeks the truth while evading authorities who think she’s obviously crazy. Telly does find some support from a police detective played by Alfre Woodward and Ash, father of one of Sam’s classmates, played well by Dominic West (Mona Lisa Smile, Chicago). Veteran British actor Linus Roache (The Chronicles of Riddick, Priest) plays a memorable character that includes a haunting stare that cuts right to your core.
Director Joesph Ruben (Sleeping With the Enemy) uses a lot of high angle shots that point down at the characters. This technique usually signifies that the audience knows more than the characters do, but that’s not the case. Filmmakers have a bigger, more ambitious plan for the audience supported by an excellent musical score by James Horner (Titanic, Braveheart) coupled with great cinematography from Anastas Michos (Mona Lisa Smile, Man on the Moon) and special effects.
The story continues as a jerky, but thrilling rollercoaster and you’re along for the ride. Screenwriter Gerald Di Pego does an excellent job creating believable lead characters, Telly and Ash, caught in a situation full of challenges and revelations. You hope they figure out what’s going on before it’s too late.
The purposeful pace changes after establishing the characters then transforms into a series of various hills, change-ups, loops and even challenges logic and convention by flying off the track a few times. This rollercoaster switches tempos a lot specifically to create audience satisfaction that includes a comprehensive potpourri of action, drama, sci-fi and romantic tension. Filmmakers even include some nice touches of humor during an interrogation scene. A solid recommendation (*** out of four stars) for this film.
Copyright © Michael Siebenaler