Ketchup Entertainment has released the first trailer for Michel Franco’s Memory, a gut-wrenching drama starring Jessica Chastain and Peter Sarsgaard. If you’ve dealt with dementia in your own family, it certainly hits home.
Jessica Chastain stars as Sylvia, a social worker whose simple and structured life is “blown open when Saul (Peter Sarsgaard) follows her home from their high school reunion. Their surprise encounter will profoundly impact both of them as they open the door to the past.” Although the trailer for Memory is rather heavy at times, dealing with early-onset dementia, sexual assault, and alcoholism, it has all the makings of an excellent drama, with brilliant performances by the two leads.
In fact, you don’t have to take my word for it; our own Chris Bumbray caught the film at the Toronto International Film Festival earlier this year and gave it a perfect 10/10 in his review. “Chastain is terrific as the initially guarded but eventually passionate Sylvia, but Sarsgaard is a revelation as Saul,” Bumbray wrote. “He subverts audience expectations at every turn, maintaining a dry sense of humour, even as his condition worsens. Memory really makes you empathize with him. Saul is still a handsome, virile, intelligent man, even if his well-meaning family, including his brother (Josh Charles) and niece (Elsie Fisher), treat him as a patient rather than a man with his own agency.“
Bumbray continued: “Yet, as grim as it sounds, Franco, who also wrote the film, keeps the movie well-paced and isn’t afraid to work in a little bittersweet comedy, such as Saul’s continued obsession with the Procol Harem song, ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale,’ which becomes a recurring motif. Parts of Memory are shattering, but it emerges as a surprisingly upbeat, hopeful look at two people who refuse to give into despair and make the most of the cards they were dealt.” He added that the film was one of the best things he saw at TIFF this year. You can check the rest of Bumbray’s review right here.
Memory will be released on December 22nd in New York and Los Angeles, before rolling out nationwide on January 5th.