Currently in theatres and on HBO/Max from writer/director Lisa Joy and Warner Bros. Pictures is the story of our world through REMINISCENCE.
Nick Bannister (Hugh Jackman) is living in a world now surrounded by water, rebellion and the have nots. During the day it seems quiet, and the nighttime is when everything comes alive. His business is investigating but also allowing people to revisit the past using a hologram program and the help of partner Watts (Thandie Newton).
At closing time, Nick is about to be thunderstruck when the beautiful Mae (Rebecca Ferguson) walks in with a request. She can not seem to find her keys and while in the program, Nick sees into her life. Starting a relationship that is filled with everything he never thought possible, devastation follows when Mae disappears.
Devastated, he uses his own program to try and understand if there are clues to where she has gone. Watts, trying to snap him out of it, reminds him that they need to get to the local police station to help a case. In the tank is Cyrus Booth (Cliff Curtis), during questioning Nick sees Mae.
Now he must come to terms with the mystery of who Mae truly is, those that have been part of her life, the connection with the Sylvan family and following the trail of murder.
Jackman as Nick is a love-struck detective that uses the mind technology to trace where Mae would have gone. Instead, he finds the life of bad guys and bad choices realizing that the only truth lies in the end. Jackman does his usual stellar job giving us a hardy performance with intensity and a broken heart.
Ferguson as Mae is a femme fatale songstress who sends Nick on a chase of love and pain. Is she really who she seems to be? That is the question and Ferguson is not giving up any answers to the very end.
Newton as Watts has worked with Nick for years and sees the path of destruction he is going on. They butt heads over the investigation and the choices Nick is making, and Newton makes sure her character is strong and no-nonsense.
Curtis as Booth looks as dastardly as they come, and he knows more than he ever plans to share. Locked inside his mind are a good portion of what has been happening all along and he is not going to give it up easily. Curtis has the remarkable ability to play both a good guy and a bad guy in equal measure because he does it so dang well.
Other cast include Natalie Martinez as Avery Castillo, Marina de Tavira as Swati Sylvan, Daniel Wu as Saint Joe, Mojean Aria as Sebastian Sylvan, Giovannie Cruz as Cindy, Brett Cullen as Walter Sylvan, Angela Saratyan as Elsa Carine, Javier Molina as Hank, Sam Medina as Falks, Norio Nishimura as Harris, Nico Parker as Zoe and Roxton Garcia as Freddie.
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Although enjoying the film, I could not help but think that the story is a mixture of other stories and genres (WATERWORLD, INCEPTION, ALTERED STATES, a tad MEMENTO and all black and white P.I. films I have ever watched etc.). The backstory of the new ‘water world’ seems to be a story all its own and gave me more questions than answers.
Jackman, Newton and Ferguson carry their part of the film very well. I enjoyed their performances as Jackman takes us on the noir mystery thriller set in a future world. Director Joy was co-creator and executive producer of the HBO series Westworld. Also, she might have gotten a few pointers from brother-in-law Christopher Nolan but for her first project, it is all about the mystery indeed.
So enjoy in a theatre or enjoy at home – just enjoy the mystery and discover REMINISCENCE.
In the end – don’t look back!