Gone, But Not Forgotten

"Good"

Gone, But Not Forgotten Review


Tainted with connotations of soapy melodrama, amnesia is a plot device screenwriters should approach with great caution. Luckily, writer/director Michael D. Akers has a deft touch, and his shoestring-budgeted Gone, But Not Forgotten gets beyond the traditional "Who am I? Where am I?" moments quickly to take on deeper issues of identity and relationships.

No one is sure how or why Mark (Matthew Montgomery) has ended up at the bottom of a ravine in a Califonia national forest. Drew (Aaron Orr), the young ranger who finds him, is baffled, and so is Mark, who can't seem to remember anything about who he is or where he's come from. No car is found nearby, so as Mark lies in a hospital bed recovering from minor injuries, questions abound.

The only thing Ranger Drew knows for sure is that he's extremely attracted to Mark, and he has little trouble convincing the doctors to let him take Mark home to his A-frame house up in the hills to continue his recovery. Before you can say "bearskin rug," the lights are low, the fire is crackling, and the clothes are coming off. By morning, Mark, who has clearly enjoyed himself, has even more questions about the life he left behind and why he may have left it.

As the lonely Drew latches on and holds tight (when is a gay forest ranger stuck in the middle of nowhere going to get another chance like this?), Mark begins to have flashes of memories that include business attire, a fancy car, a frantic apology, and maybe even a woman. He also suspects that Drew knows more about the accident than he'll reveal for fear of losing Mark back to his former life. Both men realize that the mystery will some day be solved and that Mark can't stay around forever. But then again, if Mark was escaping from an unhappy situation and has nothing to go back to, maybe he can.

Contrived though the situation may sound, Akers orchestrates it with style. Drew is extremely well-spoken about his homosexuality and the challenges it presents, and the small-town doctor (Bryna Weiss) in charge of Mark's case is a paragon of plain-spoken common sense and sympathy. Once Mark's identity is inevitably discovered, everyone involved has to shift perceptions before they can move on to the next stages of their lives. Both Drew and Mark have much to come to terms with, and those challenges form the dramatic core of this sensitively crafted film.



Gone, But Not Forgotten

Facts and Figures

Run time: 90 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 9th October 2003

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

IMDB: 5.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Michael D. Akers

Producer: Michael D. Akers,

Starring: as Mark Reeves, as Drew Parker, Ariadne Shaffer as Catherine Reeves, Joel Bryant as Paul Parker

Also starring:

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