Starring: Michael Guy Allen, Meg Barrick, Julian Curi, Zac Snyder, Anna Szyszkiewicz, David D’Andrea
Running Time: 68 Minutes
Extras: Director’s Commentary, Audition tapes, Deleted/Alternate Scenes, Short Films
Ever heard of MEMORY LANE? Probably not. It’s a small film with big ideas that, as is the case with many small films, has become buried by a plethora of unoriginal and generic entertainment. Thankfully Monster Pictures are releasing this packed 2 disc edition to finally get the audience that such a wondrous exercise in low-budget filmmaking deserves.
MEMORY LANE focuses on Nick Boxer (Allen), who realises he can relive events from his past by stopping his heart. He soon becomes addicted to the process as he believes his girlfriend’s apparent suicide was actually murder. Perfectly navigating the complex narrative, director Shawn Holmes also handles the emotional and psychological side of the story with great confidence. The constant cycle of committing suicide and being brought back to life becomes a dangerous obsession for Nick, but it’s a completely understandable one. Littered around Nick are a number of supporting players who act as a vessel in showing the damage Nick may be creating when pining after a lost love.
The mystery elements may propel the plot forward at an engaging pace, but it’s the ability to show the story from all angles that really impresses. The audience debates with themselves as to whether we are talking murder or suicide, and whether Nick is doing more harm than good. It puts us in a fascinating and delicate position where we both want Nick to succeed and continue, as well as stopping before he loses what he has left. Any film that can create such conflict in the viewer, as well as in the characters, deserves a special place in any collection.
The film isn’t without its faults, but they are ones inherent in low-budget filmmaking. The performances don’t always ring true in their delivery, but most certainly get an ‘A’ for effort. The shots also feel a bit constrictive at times, and you can’t help but imagine how things would have been represented on a budget. These are very small quibbles though and certainly won’t detract from the enjoyment of viewers willing to be taken on a journey by intelligent and thought provoking filmmakers.
That low-budget could also be referred to as ‘no budget’ with the reported money behind MEMORY LANE being under $300. Anyone bored of repetitive sci-fi or wanting more imaginative tales with roots grounded in the realism of the human mind will get a lot from MEMORY LANE. Whether you watch it as an educational experience on minimalism, or want a fresh perspective on tried and tested formulas, this is a film that will probably build a following over time, so why not be there from the beginning?
[usr=4]MEMORY LANE is released on DVD on 10th March via Monster Pictures.