Scarred Memory (1996)

Reviewed by: mrblue
Date: 05/21/2010

Scarred Memory is quite a good thriller for about the first two-thirds of its' running time, offering up plenty of suspense twinged with a does of sexiness. But, sadly, even though the script had four people working on it, everything falls apart during the final act, resulting in a disappointingly average production.

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 01/28/2007
Summary: On the contrary ! Quite disappointing

But first, the good news. Quite a lot of beautiful images and photography. Simon Yam turns in one of his best (and most unusual) performances as the former tough guy made sweet near-idiot by a brain injury. Veronica Yip sure looks great, even (mostly) fully clothed. And the warmth between Dr Yip (Ver Yip) and Lung (S Yam) is evident and real.

However... All this is not enough to save the film. The story is muddled and somewhat implausible. Clearly a star vehicle for Veronica, but fails miserably in this regard, as Yam acts her off the screen (her performance isn't much better than in the dreadful Hong_Kong_Showgirls). And the ending, though perhaps inevitable, is too neat and most disappointing. The result is mostly weird and confusing.

Overall : a must for keen Veronica fans (except those expecting generous views of her great bod), who'll probably love it. Rewarding for keen Simon fans. Others, give it a miss.

Reviewer Score: 3

Reviewed by: dandan
Date: 09/06/2006
Summary: don't read the back of the box...

now, after reading the blurb on buyoyo.com (which is just taken from the back of the dvd) i thought this sounded interesting. what i didn't realise, until i started watching the film, is that a major spoiler had been given away. quite annoying really...

dr yip (veronica yip) is an emergency room doctor, who suffered a serious assault a few months ago; she's tried to blank out her memories, but she soon finds her life crumbling around her. her relationship, with a fellow doctor, deteriorates and her negligence causes the victim of triad beating to become brain-damaged.

the victim, lung (simon yam), is moved to the intensive care unit and dr yip follows. lung makes slow progress until a triad hitman fails in an attempt to kill him; bringing him out of his coma. dr yip decides that she's had enough and leaves for macau, only to bump into lung a few months later; his memory is gone, his mind is only slowly recovering and he now walks with a limp. dr yip decides to help him, as she feels responsible for his condition; as they work together, they find that they are falling in love, but the time is coming, where dr yip will return to hong kong...

now, i liked this; it's quite restrained, yam and yip both put in strong performances, the direction is also nicely understated and there's some pretty effective stylisation used to show yip's breakdown. a good romantic thriller; not a phrase i use that often...

just don't read the blurb...

Reviewed by: Michael Kistner
Date: 08/10/2004
Summary: 4/5

Very good movie, well-made and with good actors.


Reviewed by: s****
Date: 05/10/2001
Summary: falls short of goals

This movie isn't so good. For one thing, the plot hinges on a plot twist that, well, isn't much of a twist to any viewer who's been paying attention. The film introduces some interesting ideas but never takes them to any kind of conclusion. This just felt like TV-movie drama to me. I don't want to give a whole lot away, but after having this movie attempt to pluck at your heartstrings for an hour and a half you'll probably just feel disgusted. On the other hand, by no means is this a terrible film; Simon Yam is wonderful, the plot (which I really can't discuss the details of without somewhat spoiling the film) is unique and somewhat compelling, and many scenes are perfectly staged. Overall, though, I felt like I'd seen this one before, and it could have been done a whole lot better. SCARRED MEMORY is a very shallow film posing as a character study. As such, it entirely fails to live up to its promise.

Reviewed by: shelly
Date: 12/09/1999

Don't be put off by the opening scene: this is _not_ another SimonYam horror-exploitation movie. Yam and Veronica Yip star in a romance-thriller about a nasty gangster (Yam) who is utterly transformed by a knock on the head, and a traumatized physician (Yip) who attempts to heal him. The creaky premise is right out of genre stock (hospital drama, romance with a slowly recovering amnesiac, slasher episodes, operatic finale), but director Leung hangs from it a surprisingly fresh and subversive movie. He inspires excellent performances from both stars: Simon Yam's evocation of a naive, awkward innocent is sure-handed and completely convincing. And Veronica Yip shines in a well-developed dramatic role. She succeeds in holding her character at a safe distance from either pole of woman-in-peril or woman-as-mother. Sometimes jarring, rapid-fire editing distorts and fractures SCARRED MEMORY's narrative line, constantly preventing this film from unfolding chronologically. Scenes set in the present are folded into quick flashbacks, dreams, and fantasy images. The two leads seem to experience their past, present, future, and fantasies simultaneously, as if it all were part of their immediate experience. It's a bit dizzying for the audience, not knowing exactly when in time what we are seeing on the screen is taking place, but Leung's sure hand ensures that our disorientation is just fleeting: the story remains easy to follow. An uncelebrated standout from 1996.