Primer

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I'm going to see this movie tomorrow - my indie-as-fuck film-school ex-roommate said it ruined his week it was so good. anyone here seen it? have any opinions?

lemin (lemin), Saturday, 23 October 2004 12:36 (seventeen years ago) link

i was gonna start a thread on this, tell me if you like it

s1ocki (slutsky), Saturday, 23 October 2004 19:16 (seventeen years ago) link

Tell me more, I haven't heard anything about it.

roxymuzak (roxymuzak), Saturday, 23 October 2004 21:20 (seventeen years ago) link

Most. Confusing. Movie. Ever.

That being said, what's interesting about the movie is how fascinating it is for the hour or so before it becomes completely confounding. It reminds me of when someone's trying to explain a tough theoretical concept to you and failing - you get most of it, but you just can't wrap your head around the last part of what they're saying. Needless to say, what Carruth did with on a $7000 budget is absolutely astounding. The last 20 minutes as well are more than adaquetly suspensful as it becomes clear that everything is spiraling out of control even if it's not understood why or how this deterioration occurs.

I think I'm going to see it again pretty soon.

lemin (lemin), Sunday, 24 October 2004 21:36 (seventeen years ago) link

I've not seen it, but in interviews, Carruth swears the whole thing is very carefully constructed and it all makes sense.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Sunday, 24 October 2004 21:58 (seventeen years ago) link

Oh no doubt. I read the Village Voice interview too - it's why i'm going to see it again. It's confusing, but it's not so confusing that it turns you off from the movie altogether. (well, at least for me. i can only imagine that there are many people who will hate it enough to not invest the time or money in figuring it out)

lemin (lemin), Monday, 25 October 2004 00:52 (seventeen years ago) link

i like that kind of movie, with everybody talkin' all crazy-like

s1ocki (slutsky), Monday, 25 October 2004 00:56 (seventeen years ago) link

three weeks pass...
OK, I finally saw this. Has there been any more discussion of it anywhere, like a thread with SPOILER warnings or something? I feel the need to try to piece it together, but I think I need more than one brain to do it.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Sunday, 21 November 2004 03:14 (seventeen years ago) link

five months pass...
Really really well done.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 04:30 (sixteen years ago) link

Oh thank god. Now you can explain it to me.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Thursday, 21 April 2005 05:29 (sixteen years ago) link

(I've only been waiting 6 months!)

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Thursday, 21 April 2005 05:30 (sixteen years ago) link

haha, it doesn't all make sense. Carruth must've been talking out of his ass in that interview.

that said, most of it makes sense. and it's sure a lot of fun.

lemin (lemin), Thursday, 21 April 2005 05:38 (sixteen years ago) link

The only thing I don't get is what the hell Rachel's father had to do with it. Everything else made a certain amount of sense.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 14:15 (sixteen years ago) link

i enjoyed this mostly but i think it's less confusing in substance than in storytelling. meaning i don't think it was particularly well put-together narratively, the concepts themselves aren't that confusing in and of themselves.

s1ocki (slutsky), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:02 (sixteen years ago) link

Oh I think the concepts were getting pretty confusing by the end (esp. once you realize how many different Aarons are potentially floating around and how many possible futures are being cut-off/tampered with.) I liked the confusion too that you had to think to figure out what had gone wrong and what these guys were trying to do now to "fix" it.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:10 (sixteen years ago) link

haha honestly i never figured it out!

s1ocki (slutsky), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:15 (sixteen years ago) link

Okay. So Aaron one realizes that Abe has used the fail-safe device to go back to the very beginning, presumably to stop any past/future tampering from happening. Aaron builds a device that piggy-backs on the fail-safe device and goes back to the beginning as well. Once there they both take the place of the Aaron/Abe's at that time. Aaron from the future then realizes that he can set up a situation (?)/prevent something from occurring that did (?)/free himself from his family-employment-suburban-etc life (definitely). He fails the first time so he goes BACK again and tries only this time he isn't able to take Aaron #2s place. Aaron #2 decides to remove himself from the picture and let Aaron from the future do what he needs to do (Aaron #2 is the narrator.) Aaron from the future interacts with Abe from the future and the symmetry gets messed up. Abe realizes what Aaron has done and agrees to help him in his endeavor (which involves setting up the situation in which Rachel's ex goes to the party with the shotgun and Aaron stops him.) Once they do that Aaron from the future goes off and Abe decides to stay and prevent Abe/Aaron from the present from being able to wake up and build the machine.

Did I miss anything?

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:28 (sixteen years ago) link

the theatre where i saw this honored all primer tickets for a return viewing, which was a cool gesture. i never got a chance to go back, but i liked it well enough. the really technical dialogue was great. the only thing it needed was a scene where aaron sees himself being erased from an old polaroid.

(xpost alex that hurt my head.)

mark p (Mark P), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:31 (sixteen years ago) link

mine too! you should have put a spoiler alert, haha

s1ocki (slutsky), Thursday, 21 April 2005 15:32 (sixteen years ago) link

Hahaha look if you get to this point you deserve a spoiler.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 16:07 (sixteen years ago) link

"Aaron #2 decides to remove himself from the picture?! thanks a lot, asshole!"

s1ocki (slutsky), Thursday, 21 April 2005 16:10 (sixteen years ago) link

"Aaron #2, unhappy with his compensation for his voiceover work, leaves the project. Aaron #3 is drafted to complete the film."

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Thursday, 21 April 2005 16:13 (sixteen years ago) link

Seriously Alex, that was a great explanation.

LeCoq (LeCoq), Friday, 22 April 2005 08:26 (sixteen years ago) link

Well like I said I still can't figure out how Rachel's dad is involved (except as the impetus for them using the fail-safe machine.)

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Friday, 22 April 2005 14:49 (sixteen years ago) link

I assumed that they had approached Rachel's dad for financing or something. And then he...what? He did something, started using the machine itself, for profit or to try to stop the shooting? Why did he end up comatose?

I do need to see this again.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Sunday, 24 April 2005 09:31 (sixteen years ago) link

two weeks pass...
Man oh man, this was really good. So lean and yet so enthralling. Only 78 minutes long! How many 78 minute long movies are there anymore?

Anyways, if you check this out on DVD, do yourself a favor and watch it with the Carruth commentary, it's really interesting. A lot of what he talks about is what they did to not spend any excess money, including:
* Only shooting multiple takes of scenes if there was an actual mistake (flubbed line, etc.).
* Only shooting the scenes in the movie. No extra footage. They shot 80 minutes worth of film for a 78-minute movie.
* Not writing any scenes in the script until he had permission to film in the location for that scene.
Obviously, this is all an indication of the huge amount of preplanning that went into the movie's production. But overall, it's just a great, entertaining movie.

Oh and to answer the stuff about Rachel's dad above - Carruth says in the commentary that he didn't want the audience to know how he found out about the machine, since the movie is from the perspectives of Aaron and Abe, and there's no way they could know how the dad found out about it. So there are no "clues" within the movie aboud how this happened. BUT BUT BUT he says what he imagines happened is that in one of the alternate paths of time, Rachel's exboyfriend ends up seriously hurting or killing Rachel, and Abe, plagued by the guilt of knowing that he could have done something about it, tells Rachel's dad about the machine.

What I couldn't figure out is what Aaron was doing with the French scientists at the end.

n/a (Nick A.), Monday, 9 May 2005 20:14 (sixteen years ago) link

I kept getting distracted about how Carruth, in different scenes, looks like different celebrities. He's got a kinda Hal Sparks/Clay Aiken/that dude from the Beastie Boys look to him.

n/a (Nick A.), Monday, 9 May 2005 20:18 (sixteen years ago) link

x-post.

I just wrote out a huge schpiel and then saw you posted!

Anyway, you guys should go to www.primermovie.com which has a great messageboard with more explanations/theories.


Sarah McLusky (coco), Monday, 9 May 2005 20:20 (sixteen years ago) link

The more I think about this movie, the more I like it. I really should have kept it the extra day and listened to the commentary, but I hardly ever do that.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Monday, 9 May 2005 21:53 (sixteen years ago) link

three months pass...
ARGH. I NEED TO WATCH THIS AGAIN.

SO CONFUSINGLY AWESOME.

ddb (ddb), Tuesday, 9 August 2005 03:24 (sixteen years ago) link

I still haven't seen it a second time, but what I really remember about it more than the twists and turns is just the mounting sense of paranoia and things having gone haywire all the way through the second half. That was really well done.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Tuesday, 9 August 2005 03:52 (sixteen years ago) link

I loved this film... It took me two showings to really get it, though.

Tape Store (Tape Store), Tuesday, 9 August 2005 04:00 (sixteen years ago) link

i still maintain that it's the director's fault... not yours!! don't let him fool ya!!

s1ocki (slutsky), Tuesday, 9 August 2005 13:43 (sixteen years ago) link

two weeks pass...
i enjoyed this film, and alex's explanation is useful.

i agree that aaron looks like lots of different celebs. add josh hamilton to the mix, please.

colette (a2lette), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 08:50 (sixteen years ago) link

Not convinced, don't want to know. Severely let down by film .All time travel films are rubbish.

(Actually is fun to watch, and try and work out but I DON'T BELIEVE THERE IS A PROPER ANSWER).

Pete (Pete), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 10:27 (sixteen years ago) link

Was feeling really tired after three weeks working on a big project so I asked my sister whether we had any good, relaxing DVDs and she put Primer on. I hate her. My head hurt so bad after watching it but it really WAS engrossing, I couldn't turn it off.

Can't bring myself to watch it a second time, though.

Roz (Roz), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 10:34 (sixteen years ago) link

Hah! On our flight from France we were handed free papers but they only had the Sun and the Mail. All the same the Mail's film section was basically a rant about how crap indie films were. They gave Primer 0 out of 10. Needless to say, it made me really want to see it.

dog latin (dog latin), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 11:35 (sixteen years ago) link

All time travel films are rubbish.

Apart from Time Bandits. I assume this is nothing like Time Bandits.

robster (robster), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 11:37 (sixteen years ago) link

Time Bandits is not about Time Travel, its about a boy and his dwarfish chums romping through time. Very different thing.

Time bandits is k.ace mind.

Pete (Pete), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 12:27 (sixteen years ago) link

Time Bandits occupies a funny place in the time-travel-flick canon, in that the time-travelling contained therein isn't achieved through scientific innovation, but via The Machinations Of Supernatural Powers.

Anyway, I can't wait to see this film. I suppose I need to get Netflix now.

nickalicious (nickalicious), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 12:46 (sixteen years ago) link

In good Time Travel films, time travel exists just to get the heroes in the interesting plot situation. It should not exist for "killing grandparents, oh no paradox! reasons. Except the dustbins in Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey which are grebt (but clearly explain exactly why time travel stories are rub)

Pete (Pete), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 13:01 (sixteen years ago) link

I still wish they'd used the dustbin trick in Dr. Who.

robster (robster), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 13:05 (sixteen years ago) link

It would have been better than Billie shagging the TARDIS or whatever happened in the last episode.

Pete (Pete), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 13:33 (sixteen years ago) link

SPOILER

Use Rot13 to translate
http://www.rot13.com/

Vg'f orra n juvyr fvapr V'ir frra vg ohg nf sne nf V pna erzrzore V fhezvfrq ng gur gvzr gung gur guerr ovt hafcbxra/abg-znqr-pyrne riragf va gur svyz ner guhf.

Gur vapvqrag ng gur cnegl jurer Enpury jnf guerngrarq jvgu n fubgtha orpnzr na vapvqrag jurer Enpury jnf xvyyrq. Vg jnfa'g qhr gb nalguvat gurl qverpgyl qvq, vg whfg fgnegrq unccravat nsgre gurl fgnegrq zrffvat jvgu guvatf gbb zhpu. Sebz gung cbvag ba gurl unq gb xrrc eryvivat gung ovg naq fgbc ure trggvat fubg.

Vg gbbx zr gjb jngpurf gb ernyvfr gung Enpury'f qnq jnf n thl jub gurl unq gurve rlr ba gb shaq gurz. Fb bar bs gurz gbyq uvz nobhg vg naq fbzrubj ur geniryyrq onpx va n obk rvgure jvgubhg gurve xabjyrqtr be znantrq gb eha njnl nsgrejneqf. N zber rivy gurbel vf gung Nor naq Nneba yrg uvz abg er-ragre gur obk naq qhcyvpngr uvzfrys va ernyvgl va beqre gb frr jung vg qvq gb fbzrbar.

Gur xrl fprar vf gur ovg jvgu gur zbovyr cubar. Guvf vf gur svefg gvzr gung qbhoyrf / gjb qvssrerag ernyvgvrf ner perngrq.

There's a pretty good explanation/rumination here:-

http://primermovie.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=221


On one hand I've got myself to blame (Lynskey), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 13:33 (sixteen years ago) link

Very well crafted and admirable, but the kind of PURE science-fiction I just don't enjoy. I gave up trying to follow the plot in the last 15 minutes, as it wasn't engaging my emotions one bit.

What was the deal with the last scene and the French translator guy?

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 15:11 (sixteen years ago) link

Yer dude is building a new box/boxes. Except he's rich now so he can get someone else to do it in France.

On one hand I've got myself to blame (Lynskey), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 15:15 (sixteen years ago) link

The best time-travel film is still easily La Jetee (so the airport scene near the end of this film unfortunately recalled it).

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 15:55 (sixteen years ago) link

That new Edward Burns movie WHERE they go back in time and CHANGE everything looks amusing.

Alex in SF (Alex in SF), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 16:00 (sixteen years ago) link

First I've heard of it, but Ed Burns ... THE HORROR.

At least Primer employed Weebles and March Madness.

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 24 August 2005 16:11 (sixteen years ago) link

Just saw this tonight. And I've read all the explanations upthread. And I still don't even really understand the basic concept of it. Oh well. Nice uneasy build up of paranoia - had me feeling strange on the walk home. So worth a fiver.

Best time travel movie ever = 'Time After Time', obv.

Ally C (Ally C), Tuesday, 6 September 2005 21:22 (sixteen years ago) link

whats everybody talking about

the finest of display name homies (s1ocki), Tuesday, 22 December 2009 05:14 (eleven years ago) link

I watched Timecrimes and then Spider Forest (Korean film) and thought I was going a bit mad.

Not the real Village People, Tuesday, 22 December 2009 06:53 (eleven years ago) link

timecrimes is the baby version of primer

leave garbage snickers eat snickers leave garbage (jeff), Tuesday, 22 December 2009 08:28 (eleven years ago) link

aww no need to take sides

Nhex, Tuesday, 22 December 2009 08:41 (eleven years ago) link

she loves timecrimes

leave garbage snickers eat snickers leave garbage (jeff), Tuesday, 22 December 2009 08:43 (eleven years ago) link

primer is the autistic nerd version of timecrimes

the finest of display name homies (s1ocki), Tuesday, 22 December 2009 14:53 (eleven years ago) link

six months pass...

Ouch. My head hurts.

― krakow, Monday, November 23, 2009 1:05 AM (7 months ago) Bookmark

rhythm fixated member (chap), Tuesday, 6 July 2010 23:23 (eleven years ago) link

One reviewer said that "anybody who claims to fully understand what's going on in Primer after seeing it just once is either a savant or a liar."

Phew.

rhythm fixated member (chap), Tuesday, 6 July 2010 23:27 (eleven years ago) link

nine months pass...

From Wiki.

A Topiary is the upcoming American science fiction drama film by Shane Carruth, a mathematician and a former engineer, known for his previous film Primer.

After Primer, Shane Carruth started working on his second film. In 2009, David Sullivan, one of the leads in Primer, claimed on his Twitter that "Shane Carruth's next project, A Topiary, is in the early stages of pre-production." He also stated he would have a part in this film, to what degree is unknown. Filmmaker Rian Johnson also posted: "Shane... has a mind-blowing sci-fi script. Let's all pray to the movie-gods that he gets it made soon."[1] In 2010, several news sources reported that A Topiary is in the works, and that the script is written. According to Carruth in an interview to io9, "The website for now is just a place mark as financing has yet to be completed. I'm cautiously optimistic that this can happen soon and couldn't be happier with the filmmakers that have committed to the project so far.

In the movie's prologue, it's the 1980's, and Department of Transportation worker Acre Stowe has been trying to find the perfect spot for a first response center which can quickly and easily get to the location which has the most accidents in the area. But while looking, he starts noticing a mysterious pattern repeatedly showing up all over, and even in the form of starbursts. Soon along with a friend, he gets involved with a group of scientists who investigate this phenomenon for several years until finally hitting a dead end.

After this apparent precursor, a new story starts about a group of boys aged 7-12 who somehow are in possession of a mysterious box they call the "Maker" which allows them to create strange disks and other devices which have various properties, until they discover a way to create sentient creatures with the Maker. They call these "Choruses" and use them for various friendly battles. However, soon after mysterious incidents involving the mechanical beings start to occur, the boys begin to realize that they may have seriously underestimated the powers of the Maker and the Choruses, and more importantly, the ever-growing splinter in their group.

Excited!

bRon To Run (MaresNest), Saturday, 16 April 2011 21:14 (ten years ago) link

sounds v similar to primer tho, but will watch out for this alright

the salmon of procrastination (darraghmac), Saturday, 16 April 2011 21:21 (ten years ago) link

Nice. Was there a Philip K. Dick short story that sounds a little like the 'Maker' thing?

Not the real Village People, Saturday, 16 April 2011 23:03 (ten years ago) link

one year passes...

I have finally seen this film. I liked it. I am now working on ways of making an army of duplicates of myself using their machine.

The New Dirty Vicar, Wednesday, 18 April 2012 19:00 (nine years ago) link

but at what cost re: gentrification

diafiyhm (darraghmac), Wednesday, 18 April 2012 22:35 (nine years ago) link

seven months pass...

http://www.firstshowing.net/2012/first-look-shane-carruths-new-sundance-2013-film-upstream-color/

First Look: Shane Carruth's New Film Upstream Color

"A man and woman are drawn together, entangled in the life cycle of an ageless organism. Identity becomes an illusion as they struggle to assemble the loose fragments of wrecked lives." ... the title "upstream color" might be referring to "an esoteric biopharmeceutical term that describes impurities present early in the processing/manufacture of a chemical."

EEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeee

*rad hug eomticon* (Control Z), Sunday, 2 December 2012 00:54 (nine years ago) link

Sad that he's dumbed down and sold out.

comedy is unnatural and abhorrent (Scik Mouthy), Sunday, 2 December 2012 08:23 (nine years ago) link

At first glance I like the premise of 'A Topiary' better, wonder why it was parked.

MaresNest, Sunday, 2 December 2012 11:33 (nine years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdYO3KWmcv8

please don't suck please don't suck please don't suck

*rad hug eomticon* (Control Z), Tuesday, 4 December 2012 20:17 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5U9KmAlrEXU

turds (Hungry4Ass), Wednesday, 16 January 2013 13:50 (eight years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Just rewatched Primer for the first time since '04. I followed more of it this time, but I still lost it somewhere in the last 15 minutes. The trailer for the new one looks worryingly Malick-like, but I'm hoping it's not as po-faced as advertised.

something of an astrological coup (tipsy mothra), Thursday, 31 January 2013 04:13 (eight years ago) link

a malick-like sci-fi thriller is sorta like my platonic ideal of a movie.

just saw primer a few days ago for first time. i was really impressed.

ryan, Thursday, 31 January 2013 04:15 (eight years ago) link

It's really pretty great. I was surprised how much I liked it on a revisit. And fwiw, Soderbergh likes the new one:

Are there young filmmakers you’re excited about?

Shane Carruth. He did the film Primer, and he’s got a terrific new movie at Sundance.

something of an astrological coup (tipsy mothra), Thursday, 31 January 2013 04:29 (eight years ago) link

a malick-like sci-fi thriller is sorta like my platonic ideal of a movie.

― ryan, Thursday, January 31, 2013 4:15 AM (47 minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I'd love a Malick horror film.

Matt Armstrong, Thursday, 31 January 2013 05:03 (eight years ago) link

last one approximates my experience but i rolled with it.

ryan, Thursday, 31 January 2013 05:18 (eight years ago) link

I'd love a Malick horror film.

"Tree of DEATH"
"Days of HELL"
"Badlands"

"Turkey In The Straw" coming from someplace in the clouds (Sparkle Motion), Thursday, 31 January 2013 07:01 (eight years ago) link

two months pass...

just did a primer rewatch as well. it's really hard for me to deal w/primer objectively because i respect the filmmaking so much but carruth himself called it a tone poem and that's probably the right way to treat it.

call all destroyer, Thursday, 11 April 2013 03:08 (eight years ago) link

if you grew up in texas it is a great summer kind of movie

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Thursday, 11 April 2013 03:33 (eight years ago) link

among the million reasons i respect the filmmaking, an excellent sense of place is one of them

call all destroyer, Thursday, 11 April 2013 03:34 (eight years ago) link

oh, I've got time for this movie. it's got so much dallas/houston in it... bright, blown out, no shadows, empty hallways and office parks, grassy nowheres, roads always in the background, fever dreams of august or september. and the escalating hostility and paranoia that never comes to a head. oh yes.

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Thursday, 11 April 2013 04:22 (eight years ago) link

a labyrinth of open spaces

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Thursday, 11 April 2013 04:23 (eight years ago) link

totally otm. i didnt know it was set in texas the first time i saw it but immediately was able to identify the setting.

ryan, Thursday, 11 April 2013 14:47 (eight years ago) link

I think "Primer" makes perfect sense, but only for a few minutes, until you forget why it made perfect sense. (See also: aforementioned elaborate flowchart)

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 11 April 2013 14:53 (eight years ago) link

Anyone seen the new one yet? Upstream Colour? Sounds good. Carruth seems pretty damn serious about being an actual bona fide autuer in terms of doing EVERYTHING himself.

they all are afflicted with a sickness of existence (Scik Mouthy), Thursday, 11 April 2013 15:00 (eight years ago) link

More than auteur - he's even distributing it himself!

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 11 April 2013 15:02 (eight years ago) link

Bloody hell.

they all are afflicted with a sickness of existence (Scik Mouthy), Thursday, 11 April 2013 15:05 (eight years ago) link

we have a thread for the new one UPSTREAM COLOR, a new film from Shane Carruth (Primer)

Chuck E was a hero to most (s.clover), Thursday, 11 April 2013 16:21 (eight years ago) link

oh, I've got time for this movie. it's got so much dallas/houston in it... bright, blown out, no shadows, empty hallways and office parks, grassy nowheres, roads always in the background, fever dreams of august or september. and the escalating hostility and paranoia that never comes to a head. oh yes.

― the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Wednesday, April 10, 2013 9:22 PM (1 week ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

a labyrinth of open spaces

― the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Wednesday, April 10, 2013 9:23 PM (1 week ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

nice! also the close-knit (so to speak) claustrophobia of them always being in work attire, buttoned up, with the ties still tied even in the garage after hours adds to the heat impression.

discreet, Saturday, 20 April 2013 06:14 (eight years ago) link

four weeks pass...

watching this movie now for the first time. i like the matter-of-fact way it deals with the subject of time travel, as the accidental discovery of two burnt out looking engineers. that said, the plot is really confusing... at least the first time around. it's paused now, with seven minutes to go, and i am not too proud to admit that i am LOST

Michigan seems like a dream to me now (Treeship), Sunday, 19 May 2013 00:52 (eight years ago) link

Yeah, anyone who says they have all the threads of this sorted after one watch is full of it IMO. You're not alone.

circa1916, Sunday, 19 May 2013 01:00 (eight years ago) link

This film should have hardcoded subtitles really.

MaresNest, Sunday, 19 May 2013 01:19 (eight years ago) link

There are multiple plausible interpretations, and once you accept that the last 20 minutes were edited from inadequate footage to highlight the confusion, ala Aronofsky's Pi but on a still lower budget, you can just let it wash over you as a tale of some hectic lost souls who've lost their past and are piecing together a future from scratch.

http://i194.photobucket.com/albums/z108/btbrian14/PrimerTimeline.jpg

Me So Hormetic (Sanpaku), Sunday, 19 May 2013 01:19 (eight years ago) link

I remember some talk a way back from SC about Abe & Aaron's identities, personalty traits and eventually lives slowly swapping over being more important than untangling the who-the-what-now, but recent interviews seem to indicate the opposite.

MaresNest, Sunday, 19 May 2013 01:22 (eight years ago) link

jesus christ those timelines. lol. i really liked this movie just on the level of the minimalism of the acting and cinematography. someone above talked about the texas location and "fever dreams of august" and i could feel that with this movie. on this netflix stream at least there seemed to be a lot of browns an yellows in the shots filmed during the daytime. i liked how the switch from the characters seeming in control of things to feeling totally out of control was so subtle that you, like the characters, cannot place precisely when it happened.

Michigan seems like a dream to me now (Treeship), Sunday, 19 May 2013 01:37 (eight years ago) link

I just got the sense that a clearer explication was part of the script, and left on the editing floor when Carruth decided tighter pacing made up for the film's emotional voids.

http://s3.amazonaws.com/criterion-production/stills/132078/Film_199w_Schizopolis.jpeg

Me So Hormetic (Sanpaku), Sunday, 19 May 2013 02:15 (eight years ago) link

I don't think he left anything out, I'm sure on the commentary track it's mentioned that because the stock budget was so tight they knew exactly what they were going to do with each scene, rehearsed it til it was tight and did only a couple of takes maximum, apart from a scene where Abe and Aaron are discussing something after locking up the Garage - SC kept fucking up a line. There were no scenes filmed that didn't make the cut, it was totally bespoke.

I love the movie, I don't really care for the timeline aspect. I guess because of the way he comes across in interviews you could assume that his obvious wherewithal demonstrates that he has the deal all sown up, Primer is flawed in a lot of technical ways and (imho) the idea of a knotted, opaque time travel film shot through with ellipsis is a bad one.

MaresNest, Sunday, 19 May 2013 11:20 (eight years ago) link

do u guys call it pry-mer or primmer

turds (Hungry4Ass), Sunday, 19 May 2013 12:33 (eight years ago) link

Pry-mer

MaresNest, Sunday, 19 May 2013 13:25 (eight years ago) link

eight months pass...

it's got so much dallas/houston in it

otm, watched last night with a friend, and after 5 mins I heard a "ya'll" and wondered if they might be in Texas, just going by the way their house looked and the lighting. When I saw a 972 area code in another scene, I practically squealed

Dominique, Monday, 3 February 2014 21:35 (seven years ago) link

Upstream Color might have benefitted from a similarly strong sense of place to ground it. If it was shot in Texas it feels like he went to greater lengths to make it anonymous.

ryan, Tuesday, 4 February 2014 00:34 (seven years ago) link


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