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Overall Rating

Awesome: 6.98%
Worth A Look: 17.44%
Just Average: 23.26%
Pretty Crappy: 18.6%

7 reviews, 44 user ratings

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Forgotten, The
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by Robert Flaxman

"A thriller that barely thrills and a mystery that isn't worth the effort."
1 stars

One way to look at The Forgotten is that it underestimates its audience more than any film in recent memory. At one point, a character tells Julianne Moore that "the truth won't fit inside your brain." The rest of the film operates on a similar level, doling out mostly vague hints about where it's going, seeming to assume that the audience, like the characters, can't cope with the details. It doesn't seem to realize that it isn't that hard to follow.

That's the charitable viewpoint. The other viewpoint is that the film simply doesn't have that much to say, and that's the one I'm inclined to believe.

Briefly, The Forgotten actually suggests that Telly (Moore) might be delusional, imagining a son who never existed despite the urgings of her husband (Anthony Edwards), and her shrink (Gary Sinise)'s suggestion that she suffers from paramnesia, a condition in which people invent things that never happened, in this case an entire life. That idea is pretty quickly dropped, though no one who saw the trailer will be fooled in the first place. There is a brief suggestion that Telly leads Ash (Dominic West) into remembering his daughter thanks to folie à deux, a condition in which a delusional person can cause another to have similar delusions, but by the time it's made, any lingering doubts that Moore's son existed have been washed away by the sudden appearance of shady-looking NSA agents and, most improbably, some sort of giant space vacuum that can apparently suck people into the sky with pinpoint accuracy.

Of course, actually attempting to look at psychological issues like paramnesia or folie à deux might be interesting, and who wants that when there are cheap scares to be telegraphed? James Horner's bland, didactic score doesn't help a film already hopelessly mired in convention, but it serves its purpose as something to drop out of the soundtrack right before a jump scene. What The Forgotten thinks is scary and what actually is scary are two pretty different things, however.

What does the film have to offer? Very little in terms of plot - far more time is spent on various chase scenes than on any serious exposition. Even when a bit of the story is doled out, it's usually rather vague, and the film's resolution does nothing to improve on the twist revealed ages before. The whole affair is silly and unsatisfying, and culminates with an effects shot that looks more suited for the Sci-Fi Channel than the big screen.

The cast seems fairly game, although most seem to know they belong in a better movie. Moore's lead performance is fine, but she's given surprisingly little to do, and besides West, every name actor feels wasted in minor, uninteresting roles. The Forgotten is the sort of film where the cast is pretty irrelevant, though. It's hard to conceive of any of the dialogue being delivered very well, on general principles alone.

There is a line in science fiction between the interesting and the just plain ridiculous. The Forgotten starts on the interesting side, then runs to the ridiculous side in such a hurry that by the end of the movie it's hard to remember a point where the plot made sense, or was even worth thinking about.

Forget your brain. The truth of The Forgotten would have no trouble fitting inside a thimble.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=10796&reviewer=385
originally posted: 10/09/04 17:55:59
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User Comments

9/13/17 morris campbell it sucks u will forget it fast 1 stars
7/08/09 cialis ilman reseptiä iTtHDM vozixzjp wowfhhdo drqkbquf 2 stars
11/23/08 Andrew Silly Silly Mess .. Utterly incoherent crap!!!! 1 stars
5/21/08 Keith I'm no film critic, but this is garbage, used to start bumfires,$42 mil budget,im disgusted 1 stars
2/17/07 David Pollastrini I saw it and have no memory of it. must have sucked 1 stars
2/15/07 Jenni Horrible, horrible, horrible! 1 stars
12/04/06 Stanley Thai A good film, no matter how rediculous it got. 4 stars
6/29/06 MP Bartley Very strange, and brave to keep this strangeness til the end, with no pat answers. 3 stars
6/08/06 Frank Rountree Just another movie to escape into for a brief time, it was fair 3 stars
5/07/06 Jim One would think advanced beings could come up with better experiments. 2 stars
10/21/05 Bad Critic Aliens suck! There was a pretty cool car crash, though. 2 stars
9/01/05 Tom Burns The movie had some very shocking parts for first time viewers of the film. 4 stars
8/18/05 ES boring, confusing, silly, irrelevant. I could go on . . . 2 stars
8/01/05 Taylor Fladgate Where did all those airborne people go??? 4 stars
7/17/05 Littlepurch Not perfect but really enjoyed it. Scary, mysterious and suspenseful. 4 stars
5/07/05 Valerie Sort of Scifi, but pretty interesting 4 stars
4/24/05 Quigley pretty great scares but way too predictable with horrid acting and bullet hole-ridden plot 3 stars
4/09/05 indrid cold A good movie about aliens is very rare. See "Close Encounters of the Third Kind." 2 stars
3/19/05 Dick Grill Incredibly bad. 1 stars
2/28/05 Sum Yung Guy Uh, Aliens? OK, sure, whatever. Should have locked her up in the end. . . 3 stars
2/17/05 Dan Great ass movie, kind of predictable though. 5 stars
2/06/05 ELI Didn't make much sense...it was...odd. ending did suck though 3 stars
2/04/05 Valerie White not bad/not great 3 stars
2/02/05 haha makes me want to rape a captured monkey, and have an aids fag suck my shitty dick, peace! 4 stars
1/29/05 jj This is an excellent emotional sci-fi thriller!!! 5 stars
1/23/05 Darryl Just an okay film. Agree with everyone who thinks the ending is stupid! 3 stars
1/22/05 jeff good story line but horrible ending. 2 stars
1/21/05 Tjalda L. Schiel No charisma between any of the actors. Lousy ending. Bad, bad, bad. 1 stars
1/15/05 Jeff Anderson A BIG SURPRISE! Thrilling and Joseph Ruben's best film since THE STEPFATHER 5 stars
12/30/04 Jenna Furr Suspenseful promise falls apart after JM's hands don't bleed when she falls on glass shards 2 stars
12/01/04 Tom Not brilliant but good enough 4 stars
10/27/04 Kathleen Fantastic writting and acting. Interesting story line. Everyone loved it! 5 stars
10/03/04 T Money ... I ALMOST forgot that this movie sucked 1 stars
9/29/04 Katheryn Gaping plot holes, ludicrous ending, don't bother 2 stars
9/29/04 Kevin After "Laws of Attraction" and this, Julianne Moore needs to fire her agent. 1 stars
9/28/04 C. Cunningham It had such a switch in genre that it sort of bothered me. 3 stars
9/27/04 Shten A shocking, engrossing tale 5 stars
9/26/04 Elizabeth Very hokey, and gets more and more ludicrous. 2 stars
9/26/04 Coolhand Save $8 and watch 2 episodes of X-files and one episode of Millenium... 2 stars
9/25/04 Naka No. 1 stars
9/24/04 Kris what? oh I'm reviewing this? I forgot. 1 stars
9/22/04 el burro Worth eight bucks. 4 stars
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  24-Sep-2004 (PG-13)
  DVD: 18-Jan-2005



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