Directed by Nate Taylor
Written by Peter Moore Smith (story)
Starring: Christopher Denham, Lindsay Beamish, Elizabeth Rice
Haunted by a traumatic history, photographer Kevin Wolfe struggles to systematically forget all his bad memories, but erasing his past threatens to consume his future.
Kevin Wolfe (Christopher Denham), is a NYC headshot photographer struggling to deal with tragic events of his youth. Kevin’s younger sister, Nicole, accidentally drowned in their elementary years, scarring him in irreparable ways. Now, as a photographer, Kevin meets many beautiful women in his studio. Geeky, yet charming, Kevin occasionally asks his subjects out on dates. Some reluctantly agree, some happily go, while others, like the aggressive, Adrian, pursue Kevin if just for a night.
Kevin longs for a love to blot his lifelong pain away. His inner turmoil almost always takes charge, forcing him to see deep connections where most would view casual sex. Girl after girl becomes his life’s “love”. Some, like Adrian, he relentless pursues through texts or instant messaging. One of two message quickly exceeds dozens. With each failed attempt at a lasting relationship, he must engage in activities like binge watching an entire television series in its entirety to remove the memory of the girl. I was happy to see he chose Lost.
Eventually, Forgetting the Girl must go to darker depths to erase the memories. Through its winding narrative and dreamy visual style, it lead me off the path a time or two, something that works naturally and helps the subplots develop solid foundations. Misdirection is just one of the many amazing elements that propelled this film into my top ten list for the year. Denham is fantastic as Kevin, creating many subtle layers of maladjusted pain and direction to hide behind an all-seeing camera lens. I can’t stress how emotionally complex this film is; I was surprised to stumble across such a precisely filmed psychological study.
The climax of the film left me smiling in the face of such a dark scenario. It’s hard to say how many films I watch before one of this nature ends up in my sight. Take advantage of October and watch this with a loved one. It’s beauty lies within its troubled complexity.