Orr closely examines Memento's film fabric as well as its broader cultural implications, presenting it as the result of a natural progression in a decade marked by the transformation of classic film noir into a low-budget identity noir. Nolan's dis-linear identity noir opens a black hole of perception, making the audience share the same amnesiac quality with the beleaguered, lost protagonist. This creates an intensifying suspicion of what the truth is and whether it actually exists. Orr deconstructs Memento as an intersection of popular film genre and experimental montage, discussing Nolan's mise-en-scene reduction to pure image. The author examines the narrative loop of the film as a subject to disorientations, playing forward and backward in time without a serial return to the present. Orr juxtaposes this approach to the fast-forward culture of today, calling it a perverse culture of the rewind. that plays on electronic culture's fatal flaw of .impatience with the slowing image. Nolan makes this perverse reverse dependent on the art of simple montage, creating a protagonist strikingly independent of electronic paraphernalia Leonard does not use the tools of the contemporary investigator, such as bugs, camcoders, computers, or mobiles, but is instead reliant on text and image. This, Orr argues, makes him a fable for the information age, his lack of memory storage both a match and a metaphor for the disaster bound to strike if all the world's electronic technology were to crash. Leonard is thus reduced to pure hard copy, from the tattoos covering his body to the multitude of notes lining his inside pockets. In this respect, Nolan.s protagonist becomes the antithesis of the Kubrickian cyborg monster, a de-programmed humanoid whose retrograde amnesia mirrors this technological retrograde evolution.
Hibbs examines the philosophical and moral themes in Christopher Nolan's films Memento and Insomnia as they relate to the concepts of truth and truthfulness as well as to classic film noir. The author argues that Nolan is one of today's most talented and thoughtful screenwriters, preoccupied, not unlike other contemporary filmmakers, with the thematic and stylistic features of film noir. Hibbs notes that noir, more than any other American film genre, lends itself to exploring the philosophical connotation of personal identity, the allure and dangers of autonomy, and the role of truthfulness. In Memento, Nolan dramatizes the conflict between wish fulfillment and truthfulness, illustrating the cost of merging fantasy and reality. Hibbs further examines Nolan's films through the prism of the work of British analytic philosopher Bernard Williams and his exploration of the tension between the pursuit of truthfulness and the doubt that there is really any truth to be found. Nolan's Williams-like attention to the moral value of everyday truth is also examined in comparison to David Lynch's work, including Blue Velvet, Lost Highway and Mulholland Dr., which repudiates the nobility of the protagonist's quest for truth and illuminates the perpetual fluidity of personal identity. Lynch, like Nolan, leaves his audience with no reliable way of distinguishing truth from wish fulfillment and factual narration from fantasy. Hibbs argues that through its reverse chronology, duplicitous characters, unreliable narrator, and its refusal to reveal the truth in its entirety, Memento mirrors Lynch's noir style. Finally, the author points out that while philosophers like Williams question whether self-deception is possible and what its consequences could be, Nolan gives his protagonist this peculiar condition, which makes self-deception not only possible, but extremely dangerous. Rather than subverting truth to wishful self-construction, Memento illustrates the incompatibility and conflict between truthfulness and wish fulfillment.