The Forgotten (2004)

(In theaters, October 2004) The curse of most average SF/Fantasy movies these days is the market imperative to pad a story until it’s roughly 90 minutes long. While the plot of The Forgotten may have been mildly entertaining as a 20-minutes Twilight Zone episode, it severely overstays its welcome as a feature film. Plot development is held back, obvious revelations are drawn out and the movie dilutes its impact through bad pacing. Truth be told, there just isn’t enough in the premise of the film (a woman sees elements of her life being “erased” from her life, including in other people’s memories) to justify more than a short story’s worth of material. Over ninety minutes, the basic problems of the story become obvious: All-powerful “erasers” able to modify minds but unable to paint over a wall? People “magically” remembering things? Silly chases through open fields? The powers of the opposition just don’t match the cat-and-mouse game (and the silly clues) in the film. Dumb, which wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t asking for a full hours-and-a-half of our attention. But it does. And shouldn’t. Calling a dumb little movie The Forgotten is asking for a reaction in kind. Just give me a week or two.

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