|saw memento this weekend
someone here liked this movie?
i left feeling paranoid and annoyed.
can someone tell me what the ending was all about please?
Teddy, the bad cop, has been taking advantage of Leonard's inability to make short term memories, getting him to do hits on drug dealers which Leonard thinks are revenge killings for his wife's murder. Carrie Ann Moss also uses Leonard to do her bit of dirty work. All of Teddy's manipulations--moving Leonard from hotel room to hotel room, deleting notes from his investigation--are to keep Leonard pliable and confused. When Leonard gets suspicious he's being used, Teddy tries to confuse him by saying (i) that Leonard already avenged his wife's murder, (ii) that Leonard killed his wife with insulin after getting the idea from Sammy (who faked his condition). This is contradictory, so Leonard writes "don't believe his lies" on the polaroid, and finally kills Teddy. However, some of what Teddy said may be true; all Leonard has to keep himself going are his core memories, the stories he tells himself, and his instincts. The movie suggests that's really all any of us have.
i got the impression that leonard was deliberately setting himself up to believe that teddy was his wife's killer knowing at the time that that was untrue.
Diti and I discussed the film over dinner after our only viewing months ago. We both tended to favor the Lenny as seriel killer angle. His "memory" loss being a case of serious denial or outright faked rather than amnesia. I still maintain that there is no single "correct" angle to the story.
Nolan has done a great thing having the movie's formal construction (reverse chronology) induce in the audience a similar feeling to what the short term memory sufferer experiences: there are clearly past events driving the action but we don't know what they are. If Leonard doesn't suffer from that condition--that is, if he's in denial or faking--then the reverse chronology is just stylistic fireworks and serves no purpose. I'd be happier with another theory I've heard--that Leonard is actually Sammy Jankis, even though I think it's silly--rather than think the director went to all that trouble just to give pizzazz to an open-ended story. I think he means to say something about the short term memory loss we all suffer to some extent (as Sarah suggested), which leaves us pliable to stories others tell us. [For example, the media spent two years saying that Gore would do anything to win, and then, after they fucked him, that he didn't want to win badly enough. They're counting on our collective amnesia.] The only way to survive is to take control of the narrative--lying to yourself is better than having others lie for you.
Also, FWIW, the director says the movie has a definite meaning--he's just not saying what it is.