MEMENTO CMA1600

MEMENTO CMA1600

MEMENTO

MEMENTO

CMA1600

Howdoes the plotshape our understanding of the storyin Christopher Nolan’s Memento?

Mementois an American film directed by Christopher Nolan, an OscarAward-winning director. The film features the story of LeonardShelby, who has anterograde amnesia, or short-term memory loss, as aresult of an attack by two men. On his account, Leonard confesses tokilling one attacker who reportedly raped his wife, but the secondperson hit him with a club and managed to escape. The police didn’tagree with Leonard about the second person, but Leonard believes thathis name is John. Leonard resolves to carry out his privateinvestigations that are boosted by his knowledge as an insuranceinvestigator. Leonard later tattoos his body with clues of themurderer – John G. Leonard is given an errand to run for abartender, Natalie, on condition that she would run the plate to helphim find the second attacker. The plate is identified successfullyand Leonard revenges by driving the target to an abandoned buildingwhere he kills the person as shown in the opening scene in thePolaroid photo. A policeman helps him to identify the second attackerby directing him to the same abandoned building. Leonard heads to thebuilding and finally manages to eliminate John. Teddy, Leonard’sfriend, is not content that he killed the second attacker. The storyin the film starts from the end progressing the beginning thereforemanipulating the mind of the audience.

Thereversed narrative by Christopher Nolan helps shape and manipulatesthe mind of the viewer in making an incorrect conclusion concerningthe object of the character. The movie starts at the end and as theplot develops, the events that led to the final consequence unfold.Very few movies are based on such style where the timeline goes backand forth. At the beginning, it displays a photo of a dead person anda man who seems to be holding a Polaroid camera. This will,therefore, urge the viewers to who killed the person. What led to hismurder? Some will also be eager to understand why the man holding thecamera takes the picture of a dead person. Is he an investigator or ajournalist? This question makes the viewers more focused on the film.It also draws sympathy from the viewer at the beginning since it is atraumatizing thing to be at a scene of death. The realistic nature ofa film is advanced because a person can compare the reverse narrationwith a real life situation of a person with anterograde amnesia. Theaudience naturally develops sympathy and sides with Leonard, who isunaware of the next step to take.

LeonardShelby is the first character to be introduced at the incident wherethe death took place. Since people are eager to know and understandthings, the first question that comes up in our minds would be toknow what is going on. The initial question that would come up in theaudience’s mind is, ‘what is the significance of the Polaroidcamera?’ Christopher Nolan, the play writer of the film, usesrhetoric to draw curiosity throughout the film. Many scenes in thefilm start from the end and then an account of that event isnarrated. Details play an important aspect in our lives, and manypeople would like to understand what went on. Despite the result, theevents that led to the result are important. Constantly throughoutthe film, the audience would direct sympathy to the main character,Leonard, following the situation he is posted in the film. Leonardneeding to avenge the death of his beloved wife at the beginning ofthe film forms the main mission of the film to the mind of theviewer. The sympathy of the audience is, therefore, directed tosupport psychologically the main character of the film.Unfortunately, the audience would come to learn later that they hadan incorrect understanding of the plot as the events unfold.

Thefilm is displayed in both black-white and colored sequences. Theblack and white scenes are in chronological order and the coloredpictures are in reverse order. The real motive of using this style isnot clear. However, the reverse plot is the main factor. Even inreality, the world is faced with generic manipulation of humans.People would like to show their good aspects, and yet they could bewrong. Nolan, in this film, wanted to teach us that we should not betoo quick to make conclusions and patience ought to be used in makingthese decisions. It is against stipulations of moral and socialethics to manipulate the mindsetof other people. In the end, the audience of the film could have acompletely different opinion about the character of Leonard. This isbecause the plot is carefully orchestrated to manipulate the audienceinto thinking that Leonard had been the protagonist all along. Thefilm also helps us to learn to listen to both sides of the storybefore making conclusive decisions altogether, Nolan uses the plotsuccessfully in manipulating the minds of the audience who fail tocorrectly understand the characters of the main character.