It would seem like aliens have been around and the government knows it and tries to keep it quiet. The aliens have been doing experinments and the NSA tries to do damage control. Anyways, in the movie 11 kids die in a plane crash a year or so earlier. One mother(Julianne Moore) can't seem to let go. Soon, all traces of her son, the other kids and the crash begin to disappear. So the aliens are wiping their existance from their minds. The woman convinces another father that their kids are missing. Long story short. She finds out that it wasn't the kids that were the experiment. But, the parents and their connections to their children. One alien was trying to prove that you could erase the bond between a child and parent by deleting them from the mind and other things. It works on all except for Julianne Moore. This perplexes the one alien who seems to be on some sort of deadline. At the end after all his attempts he fails and is pulled away. She then runs back to her house and finds no one home. She then goes to a local park where she finds her son and another of the "missing" kids. So you assume all was restored to normal.
Hope this helps. I am sure someone else could explain better.
I was intruiged by the trailer to this film, and went to see it the Alien twist in the story was not only unexpected, but never really felt like it fit in the story. It just seemed like the whole plot was kind of tacked on. I would definatley say to watch it once for sure, but I don't think I'd watch it twice.
casey, you may wanna spoiler tag your twist or at least warn the reader.
i really felt the movie was pretty darn entertaining ... all the way until the last 20 minutes. the premise was pretty cool, but putting aliens into the mix? wtf??? that completely *killed* any interest i had.
i mean, the movie was so convulted, we even had to have the alien dude explain what was going on. heck, there may as well have been a running narrative.
too many open questions. why didn't the aliens just pull moore's character away and be done with it? where are all these children being held? why did they do such a crappy job covering up the hockey player's room? i mean, essentially these aliens are all-powerful - so why have so many faults.
but, i would say it's definitely worth a rental. very stylized and interesting -- especially for a couple good "jump-in-your-chair" moments. one of them almost gave me a heart-attack!
If you frame it just like a human would observe it, the movie makes a great deal of sense.
Imagine a test with white mice where one mouse would consistently do something inexplicable and unexpected. Would you destroy the mouse to ensure consistent test results? Or would you vary the experiment to identify the reason.
The part which is most interesting was that the alien experimenter, under an understandable pressure of exhausting the time allotted to him, attempted to force the results to fit his expectations, primarily by forcing her to continue to forget. I'm thinking the aliens had quite a few limitations. They could obviously give themselves indestructible bodies, could yank people into the sky, and erase memories. But they were limited to minor manipulations (like modifying a photo or changing wallpaper). It almost had me thinking they rely on humans to complete the physical aspects of their tests, which puts the humans who are complicit in their testing process all the more fascinating. Imagine those same NSA guys having to wallpaper over a young girl's room that they are helping to 'disappear'.
I'm surprised that there are not more posts about this movie. What a thrill ride!
Great performances all around, a very creepy mood and what about those vacuum effects?? I almost crapped in my pants the first time they showed it, when the detective was taken away!
Same thing when the NSA agents crashed into Telly and Ash's car. That scene was done so well. They make you concentrate on their argument and then the camera is placed inside, looking towards Telly when you see the SUV coming from far, far away and then BAM! You knew the car was coming but didn't expect it to crash. Very well done.
Another scene that caught me off guard and made jump was towards the end inside the warehouse. When the alien loses his patience and he yells "YOU HAVE TO FORGET!". His face morphs into an alien face and then all glass breaks. That was pretty cool.
I agree about the alien plot being a little downer. I actually thought the movie was going to be about angels and demons or something like that, with Juleane Moore being some sort of a "chosen" one (since she's the only that has the power to hold on to her motherly bond).
I'm clearly way behind the times, but I just watched The Fogotten this weekend on DVD. While not a great film, I enjoyed it.
Alex captured my general attitude well -- I bought into the movie. It made sense to me and didn't require any additional explanation. Even the ending was appropriate for this sort of film.
I wholly understand it from the perspective of how we study animals in the wild: bag 'em, tag 'em, study and sometimes kill 'em. Except now we're the animals.
It had weaknesses to be sure: No way after being T-Boned by the Feds' car would Telly hop out unscathed and run full out from the car. She'd be shattered, hospitalzed, perhaps dead. But I don't care. It was a great scene. And in the movies, everything explodes, except when it doesn't so the protagonists can get away.
Likewise the scope of the Aliens' power was inconsistent. They can Hoover people from the great beyond, but they can't get their Gov't lackeys to properly paint over a kid's wall mural?
But what I liked was the movie was true to itself. This was a an alien-conspiracy movie and they stuck to it. No weak backing out of it: it was real. Telly's life was being manipulated. People were disappearing. Her husband did forget her. No dream sequences. No silly, it's just a crazy Terrorist plot (like the mis-managed Flight Plan from a couple years ago). Darn it, there are aliens and that's that.
As for the happy ending, there were two possible endings. Telly finally succumbs to the Alien manipulations, forgets her son and the movie closes darkly. Or, Telly, through her indominatible and incomprehensible (to aliens) Human Spirit remembers her son through all.
In this sort of movie, as with Dark City and all of Star Trek, Human Spirit dominates and there is a happy ending.
There could have been an ironic twist, where she remembers but her son isn't returned to her, leaving her the one sane soul in a mad world. But that's a total downer and I don't fault them for choosing to go with the positive ending.