Today’s Just Jot It January prompt is the word “memento.”
As soon as I saw the prompt, all I could think of was the movie “Memento,” an offbeat thriller released in 2000 and directed by Christopher Nolan, who adapted the film from a short story by his brother Jonathan Nolan.
The protagonist, portrayed by Guy Pearce, is a man who is struggling to put his life back together after the brutal rape and murder of his wife. But having been savagely beaten by the same man who killed his wife, his short-term memory had been destroyed and he was no longer able to retain any new information. Thus, he had to resort to copious note-taking and Polaroid photographs in order to keep track of what happens to him over the course of a day. He even tattooed himself with a few crucial bits of information that he couldn’t get along without. The character is obsessed with taking revenge against the man who has ruined his life, and he sets out to find him, getting help from some questionable characters.
What’s most intriguing about this movie, to me, anyway, is that it progresses backwards in time. The protagonist kills the murderer of his wife in the film’s first scene, and it then moves backward from that point, in roughly five-minute increments, allowing us to see how he tracked the guy down, and then ending with what is, chronologically, the story’s beginning. It sort of blew my mind.
So for today’s Jot it January, I suggest you jot down the name of the movie — “Memento” — and see if you can stream it. I think it’s available on Amazon Prime and on YouTube.