Final Cut, a drama/sci-fi film, examines the tricks of memory and the potential implications of accessing and editing a person’s memories after death.
In the movie, Zoe chips are implanted into a person’s brain to record the sights and sounds of his or her life.
When a person dies, the chip is removed and given to a “cutter,” or someone who looks at the recorded memories of the person and pieces together life scenes for an event called a “rememory.” Rememories are projected showings of the edited memories.
Cutters have the power to permanently delete memories, and they can also pick and choose memories for the rememory based on the family’s requests. Cutters have access to a person’s entire life.
Robin Williams stars as the unemotional and detached Alan Hakman, a 51-year-old cutter who is haunted by his own memories. His sometime girlfriend Delila (Mira Sorvino) shows up in a few scenes to bring a smidgen of a love theme into the movie. The most convincing character is played by James Caviezel, a foe trying to destroy the Zoe implant business.
Mimi Kuzyk, Thom Bishops and Brendan Fletcher play supporting roles that are not notable, mainly because the characters never have the opportunity to develop.
The movie skims the surface of several ethical considerations. If technology such as the Zoe implants existed, who would own the memories? Is it right to reconstruct someone’s existence by the way we want the person to be remembered, as opposed to who he or she really was? Would people live their lives differently if they knew that they had an implant?
In addition to the ethical issues, the movie also explores usual big business themes such as corruption.
All of the movie’s short suspenseful climaxes make for a disjointed storyline, which is unfortunate, because the movie could have become a serious voice questioning the future of technology and its ramifications. Instead, it briefly touches on too many ideas, leaving the viewer with only vague glimpses into how life could become.
The stone-faced character Williams plays would have been accessible to many actors in Hollywood. This role was a waste of his talent. Williams deserves to play characters with depth and emotion, neither of which existed in his role in this film.
This movie would be a good one to rent on a rainy day when you want something to ponder. But if you don’t feel like thinking, it wouldn’t be a good choice.
Mindy Ehrhart can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.