Primer - Winner of Sundance at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Awake In The Dark

Awake In The Dark
What you're watching these days on the Big Screen and the Small Screen.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old January 26th, 2004, 11:46 AM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 316
Primer - Winner of Sundance

http://www.primermovie.com

Only cost $7000 to make, and it won the Grand Jurry Award. Amazing. Move over El-Mariachi.

Theres also a message board on the site, and you can ask the director questions.
Bryan Mitchell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 26th, 2004, 01:39 PM   #2
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Posts: 1,929
Congratulations to Shane.

The $7,000 figure is obviously below the actual production cost.

A blow up to 35 costs more than that, and you can't screen Super 16 with synch sound, unless it's DTS, and if the sole IMDb review currently up is any indicator, this movie didn't get a DTS treatment.

Perhaps $7,000 is what it cost to purchase and develop their negative.
__________________
All the best,
Robert K S

Search DVinfo.net for quick answers | The best in the business: DVinfo.net sponsors
Robert Knecht Schmidt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 26th, 2004, 02:55 PM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 316
I have no idea, but you make a good point. He did get alot of help as far as lower costs by asking around. We could always ask him. $7k is what the site and imdb say though.
Bryan Mitchell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 26th, 2004, 04:06 PM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Dallas,TX
Posts: 76
Primer

Hey, you guys forgot to mention that Primer was shot and produced in Dallas, USA. Congratulations to Shane and his team.

Mickey Stroud
__________________
Director: LadyX Films, Episode 27, A Tale of 2 Soldiers, Seeking Love in Foreign Places
Mickey Stroud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 27th, 2004, 11:16 AM   #5
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Dallas,TX
Posts: 76
DONE

Went back and watched the Primer trailer again today.

Even more impressed. If you haven't seen this, you need to. It's very powerful. So strong that when I typed my password in for DV Info, I typed Primer by mistake. Now that's getting inside someone's head!

Of course, once something is inside my head, it sounds like a kettle drum going off in a vacuous cavern. So, does anyone know of a Primer antidote that will calm my jitters, ease this feeling of impending Panic and this tense music in my head?

From the looks of the trailer, Sundance picked a winner.
__________________
Director: LadyX Films, Episode 27, A Tale of 2 Soldiers, Seeking Love in Foreign Places
Mickey Stroud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 02:31 PM   #6
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Posts: 1,929
Whether the movie is explicable as a puzzle, an intellectual game, is not as important, I think, as the fact that the movie is inexplicable as a piece of art, i.e., a revelation to introspection. As far as I was able to tell, it doesn't make any attempt to answer the profound question posed by its trailer, viz., "What do you want when you can have anything you want?"

SPOILERS BELOW.

The first step to understanding the puzzle is to note, from Shane Carruth's perspective, the problem with all other time travel movies, which is that they delink space and time. The DeLorean from Back to the Future, Carruth complains, would end up out in the middle of outer space somewhere each time it traveled into the past or future, because, if there were such a thing as a universally fixed reference frame, then the DeLorean would be stuck to it but the revolution of the earth, sun, galaxy, etc. would not. So Carruth attempts to fix this problem by making a time machine that forces the time traveller to stay put in spacetime for the duration of his time travel. For this reason, the time traveller can never go back in time any further than when he first activated the time machine. This condition is inviolable regardless of the conceit Carruth quickly exploits involving packing up an extra time machine and taking it into the time machine with you. What this conceit does do is it permits for an unlimited supply of doubles who must then be drugged and hidden away someplace so that they cannot interfere with the actions of the latest iteration.

So Carruth ignores the problem of the causal paradox. In Shane's model of the universe, if you go back in time and kill yourself from a few hours ago, you don't vanish, a la Back to the Future, and the universe doesn't terminate, having loss its causal parity. But (for some reason without basis in physics) the "recursion" does induce psychobiological symptoms that progress with each iteration--fatigue, bleeding from the ears, loss of reason and the ability to focus (and hence, write clearly), frustration, paranoia, and, we presume, ultimately, madness.

So the movie follows the exploits of three time travellers. (Though the film starts with four enterprising engineers, it quickly dispenses with two of them for no other apparent reason than the hassle of needing so many actors to show up to shoot each day.) And the entire first half of the film, which deals with the invention of the time machine, seems to be a completely separate and needless story, as it delivers no real insight into either of the main characters, Aaron and Abe, at least not any that would predilect their motivations as time travellers in the second half of the film. We're just given to know they're both bright, industrious, and at least in Aaron's case, somewhat selfish, since he locks his other two partners out of the time-travelling fun once the time machine is constructed. The two young men begin their experiments by day-trading on stocks they know to be hot, living 36-hour days since each time-voyage adds 12 hours (6 spent in the time machine going back in time, and 6 spent out in the real world living out the day).

The third time traveller is Thomas Granger, the venture capitalist whom the engineers had been trying to impress for investment, and coincidentally, the father of Rachel, Abe's love interest. We're never told exactly how or why Granger travels back into time, but we suspect that he may have done so to prevent the shooting death of his daughter at the hands of a deranged ex-boyfriend. (He would have been told about the time machine by a distraught Abe in the aftermath of the disaster.)

At some point, Aaron decides to "reboot" the whole scenario by travelling back to the very beginning so that he can be in control, not Abe. The movie is narrated by Aaron 2, who is eventually overtaken by Aaron 3, who through successive iterations becomes the hero of the fateful party by memorizing the actions of and successfully disarming the murderous ex-boyfriend in a fashion reminiscent of Groundhog Day.

Abe catches on and tells Aaron's latest iteration--we have no idea how many down the line that is, or how many other Aarons have been drugged or murdered--to leave the country. Aaron does so, and goes off to build a much larger time machine in some (French-speaking?) country.

And, I think, that's about all there is to it. I've only seen it once, but I don't think I've missed anything crucial.

So. Primer. Interesting puzzle. Not profound art.
__________________
All the best,
Robert K S

Search DVinfo.net for quick answers | The best in the business: DVinfo.net sponsors
Robert Knecht Schmidt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 02:35 PM   #7
Air China Pilot
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Posts: 2,389
Thanks for the review. I saw it at the Vancouver film fest and I walked out with a big *shrug*. Your review confirms my thoughts. What I liked about the film was the setting, the authenticity of the work they were doing. I thought it ramped up too quickly after the time machine was discovered without giving us a chance to feel the joy of discovery and reveal how their characters would act out in the ifnal act.
__________________
--
Visit http://www.KeithLoh.com | stuff about living in Vancouver | My Flickr photo gallery
Keith Loh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 02:42 PM   #8
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Posts: 1,929
I forgot to add that stylistically, the film adds nothing to film vocabulary that wasn't already made standard by Darren Aronofsky. Watch for shamelessly ripped-off storage unit door closings and meal preparations.
__________________
All the best,
Robert K S

Search DVinfo.net for quick answers | The best in the business: DVinfo.net sponsors
Robert Knecht Schmidt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 07:54 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: 32 44' N 117 10' W
Posts: 820
I have yet to see this but want to. Bravo to the first time filmmaker and kicking butt at Sundance. Its the stuff dreams are made of.

Robert -

Interesting puzzle but not profound art? So, was it a good film?

Shamelessly ripping off Aronofsky? Come on.
John Hudson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 08:14 PM   #10
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Posts: 1,929
"Interesting puzzle but not profound art? So, was it a good film?"

Is a Chinese finger trap a good toy?
__________________
All the best,
Robert K S

Search DVinfo.net for quick answers | The best in the business: DVinfo.net sponsors
Robert Knecht Schmidt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 23rd, 2004, 08:22 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: 32 44' N 117 10' W
Posts: 820
I'll say yes. (Did I win something?)
John Hudson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 24th, 2004, 03:33 AM   #12
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 316
Cool, some others are seeing this now. I got a chance to see it a few months ago at the cinevegas film festival. Q&A with David Sullivan - Abe. I think it was probably an audience of 100, but only 10 stayed around for the Q&A in the hall. I guess that tells you something, but it was cool to have that few people in a circle.

I thought the movie was really cool. The voice over by Abe was actually my favorite part, and the coolest part of the movie. Did Primer have it's flaws? Sure, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it.

Between this, and the other "indie" movie I saw this year, Open Water, I'd give Primer an "A-", and Open Water a "D".
Bryan Mitchell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 24th, 2004, 09:02 PM   #13
Trustee
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 1,564
saw the trailer... interesting it got release, etc. definitely a rental for sure.

now as for the $7k... as others have noted... i'm suspicious of that. is it just an amount to impress people? i mean... is it possible even?
__________________
bow wow wow
Yi Fong Yu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 24th, 2004, 10:47 PM   #14
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: 32 44' N 117 10' W
Posts: 820
There are a ton of articles out on the film with interviews with the director about this very issue.
John Hudson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 24th, 2004, 11:42 PM   #15
Tourist
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 3
Good idea, but...

did you all think it was shot well? It was lit plainly, simply and, in some parts, poorly.

Yes, an interesting and good idea, but I think they could have shot it on video with more attention paid to lighting and gotten the same results. Anyone agree/disagree?
__________________
Mundus Vult Decepi
Jesse Roberts is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Awake In The Dark

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:17 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network