Review in a Hurry: A rich student attending the James Dean School of Brooding (Robert Pattinson) falls for a shaggy girl from the other side of the tracks (Emilie de Ravin). The result: Tear-jerking histrionics squarely aimed at the high-school set, with turgid pacing, a borderline offensive ending and performances ranging from overblown to vaudevillian.
The Bigger Picture: Remember Me is the story of Tyler (Pattinson), a brooding New York college student who smokes cigarettes on his fire escape, shaves intermittently, writes tortured thoughts to his dead brother in a leather-bound journal, and has a tattoo of said dead brother on his chest. In other words, Tyler appears to have been created by a focus group made up of lovelorn 14-year-old girls.
After our hero gets into a scrape with an officer from Queens, roommate Aidan (a hyperschticky Tate Ellington) suggests that Tyler romance the cop's daughter, Ally (de Ravin). Ally has her own baggage, having witnessed her mom's murder on a subway platform. The two of them eventually hook up, but only after both Ally and Tyler happen to have suffered minor facial injuries. (They're both bruised souls. Get it? Get it?)
Everything in this movie is hyped as a mega-major deal. When Tyler's little sister, Caroline, (Ruby Jerins) gets her hair cut by mean schoolmates, the musical score dips to the tragedy level of a fatal car accident; estranged father Charles (Pierce Brosnan) rushes to be near Caroline, and Tyler will not leave Caroline's side until she falls asleep.
Finally, real tragedy comes around.
Given all the marketing surrounding the flick, it's no spoiler to say it involves Sept. 11. But the use of those history-changing attacks—as, essentially, a vehicle for tear-jerking romance—feels cheap and manipulative. It's very telling that during the film's heaviest scenes—including the couple's first kiss and the climax—the audience members as a press screening didn't cry. They laughed.
The 180—a Second Opinion: If you thought New Moon was genius, this movie will be your Casablanca.
For a different take on Remember Me, check out Ben Lyons on Daily 10 tonight at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT. He's a fan.