The easiest way to summarize the pulpy, cable-movie ludicrousness of Memory is to mention that it stars Billy Zane. Ironic and slightly aloof, Zane approaches each new role with apologetic loopiness, as if he were cluing the audience in on his embarrassment at the latest bunk he’s signed up for. In director Bennett Davlin’s pseudo-spooky thriller, Zane plays a doctor who, after being exposed to a strange powder in Brazil, starts experiencing the memories of a ’70s child-killer who remains at large. Can he catch the murderer? Is he losing his mind? And is that Zane’s real hair? From its Philip Glass–biting score to its C-level cast, Memory itself feels cobbled together from the foggy recollections of other psychological whodunits. But while the mystery doesn’t engage, Davlin keeps you off guard with his film’s weird rhythms, bouncing from family drama to romance to macabre mood piece without much warning. How he and Zane manage to make such dreck almost tolerable is the real mystery here.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on March 13, 2007