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Forgetting the Plot of Books and Movies...
Old 11-22-2015, 07:54 AM   #1
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Forgetting the Plot of Books and Movies...

Last night my SO and I watched, on Netflix, Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris," which we saw in the theatre on its release about four years ago. We are in our 40s-50s, and we were both amazed at how much of the plot we completely forgot -- like 75% of it.

I also have the same issue with books -- even ones I loved. When I reread them after a couple of years, whole huge sections of the plot have been forgotten until I reread them.

Does this happen to you?

The bad part is that I'm worried about my memory (in a family chock full of Alzheimer's sufferers). The nice part is that I get to enjoy good stuff all over again!
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Old 11-22-2015, 08:09 AM   #2
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Woody Allen movies have plots?
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Old 11-22-2015, 08:36 AM   #3
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Okay, okay -- but I forgot most of the plot of Casablanca and Citizen Kane too!
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Old 11-22-2015, 09:58 AM   #4
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I don't think what you're describing is at all unusual. I think the time to worry is when you forget the plot while you are actually watching or reading. That would be similar to getting lost while driving to a known place.

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Last night my SO and I watched, on Netflix, Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris," which we saw in the theatre on its release about four years ago. We are in our 40s-50s, and we were both amazed at how much of the plot we completely forgot -- like 75% of it.

I also have the same issue with books -- even ones I loved. When I reread them after a couple of years, whole huge sections of the plot have been forgotten until I reread them.

Does this happen to you?

The bad part is that I'm worried about my memory (in a family chock full of Alzheimer's sufferers). The nice part is that I get to enjoy good stuff all over again!
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:05 AM   #5
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I started reading this thread.....now I can't recall what it's about.....
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:08 AM   #6
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I have a tendency to read a page and after turning the page forget what I just read

Unless of course, the topic really interests me .
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:22 AM   #7
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Eh, there's only one plot to remember: boy meets ____, boy loses ____, etc., plus a couple of chase scenes.

If both you and your SO are both experiencing this it's probably nothing, or maybe you need a new carbon monoxide detector.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:12 AM   #8
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I experience this a lot. I am a member of several book clubs and I usually like to read ahead. By the time we meet to discuss the book, I have often forgotten the plot, particularly if I didn't love the book. If this was school, I would have made notes, but as I am ER, I refuse to do any actual w*rk. Instead I focus on discussing the main themes, literary style, etc. and I pose questions such as "does anyone think that the train is a character in The Girl on the Train?"
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:15 AM   #9
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I do the same thing. I mentioned a Netflix movie here that I really liked and to be honest, I can't remember anything other than I liked it. I get to watch it again!
Retirement is supposed to be so simple. Fact is, life is complicated, with our minds going in zillions of directions.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:32 AM   #10
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I experience this too. I chalk it up to decades of exposure to media and w*rk teaching me to commit to memory only the key items so as to avoid cluttering my brain with non-essentials. It's a Good Thing.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:26 PM   #11
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It definitely happens to me also. My DH and I can't remember if we have seen the film or read the book. I used to rely on him to remember what musical groups we have seen, etc, but now I don't always trust his answers. Oh well, not really important in the grand scheme of things.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:29 PM   #12
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"It's the same old story. Boy finds girl; boy loses girl; girl finds boy; boy forgets girl; boy remembers girl; girl dies in tragic blimp accident over the Orange Bowl on New Years Day."
-- "The Naked Gun" (1988)
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Old 11-23-2015, 06:34 AM   #13
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It happens to me all the time. I will often get anywhere from 10 - 100 pages into a book only to realize I have already read it. I get all my books from the library and wish they would keep a database with my check outs but libraries discontinued those since police agencies trolled them looking for people interested in topics the authorities deemed questionable.
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:06 AM   #14
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Not a problem for me. I've always enjoyed re-reading a book I previously enjoyed.
Some movies I enjoy again but not as much as books.
Not a problem for me. I've always enjoyed re-reading a book I previously enjoyed.
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:11 AM   #15
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Not a problem for me. I've always enjoyed re-reading a book I previously enjoyed.
Some movies I enjoy again but not as much as books.
Not a problem for me. I've always enjoyed re-reading a book I previously enjoyed.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:38 AM   #16
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I wish I could say it gets better with age
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Old 11-23-2015, 09:11 AM   #17
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For me, I know this isn't an age thing as it has always happened. I care about the plot during the movie (or book) and am eager to see how it resolves, but once resolved I quickly forget about it. Perhaps because it was only of interest for entertainment and has very little real impact on my life. Sometimes I notice even an hour or two later that I don't remember how a particular plot point worked out, even though I do remember being keenly interested at the time.
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Old 11-23-2015, 10:15 AM   #18
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Yep - I can read a book years later, and be about half we through before I think "I remember this!" - but I will still have forgotten most of the details.

It's OK by me - because then I can enjoy reading it again!
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Old 11-23-2015, 10:25 AM   #19
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I watch a couple dozen tv shows every week. Lets say I watched NCIS last week. I can't recall anything that happened on the show last week. They show a recap at the beginning of the episode and that makes me remember most of the previous episode. Without that recap I wouldn't have a clue. I've always been like that. That's why I failed almost every non-multiple choice test I have ever taken and couldn't get a college degree. I don't think it's a sign of alzheimer's. Some people just don't have the recall that others have.
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:37 AM   #20
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I buy books cheap a few times a year at library sales, and then donate them back, so I always have a large rotating stack. As I am perusing books at these sales, I often think that the plot sounds familiar, so I skim through it looking at character names to see if they sound familiar. Even still, every once in a while I get 30-50 pages in and realize I have read it before. I read a lot of murder mysteries; they all kind of blend together. I'm better about other genres; although I sometimes forget which Isabel Allende books I have read and which ones are on my mental "to get to" list.
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