Remember Me could have been called "The Many Moods of Robert Pattinson's Hair."
Scruffy, coiffed, combed, exploding like an M-80 in a haystack, flattened by sleep, wet from having a pot of spaghetti water dumped on him … the actor's follicles are the stars of the show.
Pattinson (of the Twilight saga, naturally) plays Tyler Hawkins, estranged from his rich, powerful and remote lawyer father (Pierce Brosnan) and living in abject squalor in a Soho apartment. He's angry and sullen and rudely smokes in inappropriate situations. He audits classes at New York University but apparently has no ambition or goals.
We're led to believe that Tyler's malaise is a result of the suicide of his older brother, but perhaps he's just a jerk. It looks as if the actor absorbed all the angst-riddled mannerisms of the late James Dean but overlooked the humanity.
At least Tyler has a soft spot for his little sister (Ruby Jerins), a sensitive misfit who may be an artistic genius.
Emilie de Ravin (of TV's Lost) is Ally, who witnessed the murder of her mother when she was but 10. She's strong-willed and no-nonsense, which leads to some friction with her controlling father, an NYPD detective (Chris Cooper).
When Tyler is arrested by Ally's father after an altercation, he starts dating her, mostly to get revenge on her old man. But he falls for her, and, of course, there's that uncomfortable moment when she learns the truth. Here we discover Pattinson's hair is compelling even after he has just been slapped.
For no apparent reason, Will Fetters' meandering screenplay is set in 2001. But wait … didn't something important happen that year?
Allen Coulter's movie isn't a total disaster. There are a couple of laughs, and the film looks fine.
But Remember Me is a romance that isn't particularly romantic, a study of disaffected youth that's just not affecting.