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FORGET ME NOT
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Reviewed by: Pat Torfe

Directed by: Tyler Oliver

Starring:
Carly Schroeder
Cody Linley
Micah Alberti
Brittany Renee Finamore

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about

It's grad weekend. Class president Sandy Channing and her friends are out playing a game of hide-and-seek in a cemetery when a strange girl appears and asks to join them. Sandy and her friends agree, and after Sandy wins the game, the stranger remarks that Sandy doesn't remember her and promptly jumps off a cliff. Sandy is consoled by her friends, saying that the police are searching for the body. But when her friends are disappearing, Sandy discovers a forgotten betrayal that has just woke up to get revenge.

Is it good movie?

Let's face it, folks: horror films about ghosts just aren't the 'in' thing right now. Come to think of it, I haven't seen a great film involving ghosts in a while. I'm not talking about the invasion of Japanese remakes, either. Honestly, the only one that stick out for me are the classics like THE FOG and POLTERGEIST. FORGET ME NOT (not to be confused with the British film of the same name) seeks to fill that void, having snagged the award for Best Horror Film at the Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival for debut director Tyler Oliver, who also produced the film. Given my track record with indie films that have the director doing double and triple duties, what are the odds that this film will be memorable?

For starters, the film presents an interesting plot device that for some reason reminded me of THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT. The idea is this: one by one, as each of Sandy's beautiful friends (and I mean that when I say it, as these kids are probably straight out of a magazine shoot) meet their demise, the rest of Sandy's clique forgets that the departed individual ever existed except for Sandy. As you probably have guessed, this leads to moments where Sandy is perceived by her remaining friends as going crazy. It's something that would no doubt be an emotional hit if someone were in Sandy's position, which is both maddening and fascinating at the same time.

Probably the best thing about this film is the fact that you have beautiful people (again, the 'teens' in the film) being knocked off in some rather mean ways. A violent drowning here, a face forced into a woodworking machine there. It's all fun, gooey times with unrealistic and clichéd character types. The makeup for the ghost creatures are reminiscent of Samara from THE RING with a couple of tweaks (namely duct tape), complete with that shaking effect and weird sounds.

However, try as I might, I couldn't get over the fact that what FORGET ME NOT presents is your typical MTV 'teens' presented in clichéd ways (the stoner, the slut, the boozer, etc.) that have you rolling your eyes and rapidly losing interest. It also doesn't help that the film falls into the 'do something stupid, get bit in the ass later' motif when it comes to the kills. Originality is for suckers, it seems. Top things off with a twist ending that doesn't satisfy and is outright lame in its execution, and FORGET ME NOT is, well, forgettable.

FORGET ME NOT, aside from the interesting premise and plot device, just didn't stick with me. The film's nasty kills are buried under stereotypical characters and an overall 'could care less' feeling. Those looking for a ghost story that sticks may want to revisit THE RING or delve father back into more classic ghost story films.

Video / Audio

Video: Presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, the film looks pretty good for its indie-based origins. Colours are rich and detail is good, with a few hints of edge-enhancement.

Audio: The 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround track matches up with the film, again belying the indie label. Dialogue is clear and distortion-free, with the creepy ghost sounds coming through nicely.

The Extras

For starters we're presented with a collection of deleted scenes revolving around Sandy and a couple of her friends. There's no explanation as to why they were cut, though pacing is probably a safe bet.

Following the cut scenes is the film's alternate ending, which outdoes the original in terms of being groan-worthy (the nurses act as if they're reading from cue cards) while expanding upon the original ending's aftermath. It's interesting, but the script makes it seem like it's from a bad soap opera.

Rounding out the extras is a throwaway Photo Gallery consisting of production stills of the characters and the film's theatrical trailer.

Last Call

FORGET ME NOT is filled with MTV teens, suspect acting and derivativeness that buries the one interesting plot device within the film. The extras don't do much more for the film, which ultimately just doesn't have that staying power.

At least the onesheet looks cool.

ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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