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'I Remember You' dwells on fate and love after water rescue

'I Remember You' dwells on fate and love after water rescue
A scene from "I Remember You." (Indie Rights)

"I Remember You" recounts the romance between cancer researcher Leah (Stefanie Butler) and aspiring actor Samuel (Joe Egender) after she saves him from drowning. Fate has brought them together, or so he's convinced.

The chance encounter has irrevocably altered both of their lives. Samuel's vision has turned blurry while his other senses have become more acute, so he stays home all day like a vampire with the blinds drawn. Leah develops post-traumatic stress disorder and aquaphobia. She stops taking showers and uses hand sanitizer to maintain personal hygiene.

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Positive changes come too. Though Leah ordinarily won't join her colleagues for drinks, she's happy to meet Samuel for coffee.

Why Samuel's friends left him to drown remains a mystery. Writer-director Claudia Sparrow prefers to pay more mind to the abstract: past lives, reincarnations and destinies. It's amusing that a scientist like Leah, of all people, would entertain such ideas and eventually surrender to emotional, intuitive and irrational instincts. (Had her therapist, played by Malin Yhr, not been female, this film would have flunked the Bechdel test — that a film has female characters who talk about something other than men.)

Credible special effects and Kristoffer Carrillo's picturesque photography buoy the love story.

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"I Remember You."

No MPAA rating.

Running time: 1 hour, 26 minutes.

Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood.

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