Memento - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Memento Reviews

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Cole Smithey
May 20, 2009
"Memento" is a crime-revenge story that relies on its one big gimmick.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Top Critic
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
September 27, 2011
More a puzzle than a meaningful story, it reminds me of how Edmund Wilson compared reading a mystery to eagerly unpacking a box of excelsior, only to find a few rusty nails at the bottom.
Sean Burns
Philadelphia Weekly
August 10, 2002
...for all its formal wizardry, ultimately an ice-cold feat of intellectual gamesmanship. Once the novelty wears off, there's nothing left.
Chuck Rudolph
Matinee Magazine
September 18, 2001
A con in the mode of Bryan Singer's The Usual Suspects--the scam of the year.
Full Review | Original Score: short
Jimmy O
Film Snobs
June 10, 2002
Some have said that the film would work just as well beginning to end. I disagree.
Steven D. Greydanus
Decent Films Guide
May 9, 2002
Intriguing and accomplished as it was, Memento left me unpersuaded that this trip was really necessary.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Gregory Weinkauf
New Times
March 15, 2001
Although it's being trumpeted for its undeniably ambitious narrative structure, Memento feels mostly like an audacious prank.
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
March 16, 2001
You might suspect that it's told backwards because telling it forwards would tip us off much sooner that it doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
David Elliott
San Diego Union-Tribune
March 30, 2001
It seems less than the sum of its time-slicing moves.
Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle
April 9, 2001
In forward progression, the narrative would garner little interest, thus making the reverse storytelling a filmmaker's conceit.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
April 11, 2001
Nolan uses the structure simply as a gimmick to refresh a stale story of revenge, crime, sex, a film noir that never gets any darker than gris.
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Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
April 27, 2007
I am neither upset nor disturbed by Memento , only vaguely dissatisfied. I simply don't buy Jonathan Nolan's thesis that audiences know all the tropes and tricks of crime thrillers backward and forward.
Michael Sragow
Baltimore Sun
March 26, 2014
This is the kind of movie that gas-bag instructors use to illustrate the concept that one man's reality is another's fiction. But it's puny stuff compared to Kurosawa's Rashomon.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
David McGillivray
Radio Times
March 26, 2014
The mystery requires a lot of concentration, but the stunning final scene is ample reward. Not just an indulgence, the ingenious structure makes the point that memory, although unreliable, is what we depend upon for our sense of reality.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Carly Kocurek
Common Sense Media
January 1, 2011
Innovative movie with a mature premise.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Gina Carbone
Seacoast Newspapers (NH/Maine)
July 13, 2002
If Pulp Fiction represents the birth of post-modern filmmaking, Memento marks its adolescent spurt.
Full ReviewRead More | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
April 13, 2001
The movie doesn't supply the usual payoff of a thriller (how can it?), but it's uncanny in evoking a state of mind.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
March 15, 2001
When it comes to making a Top 10 list for 2001, one title I won't forget is Memento.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
March 26, 2014
If nothing else, Memento is a savvy comment on the queasy uncertainties of the postmodern condition, in which history goes no further back than yesterday's news.
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
March 26, 2014
I can't remember when a movie has seemed so clever, strangely affecting and slyly funny at the very same time.
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