Thursday, 12 February 2009

Review: Primer

This indie film sets itself up as the opposite of Back to the Future and is an attempt to make an "intelligent" time travel film. The plot concerns garage physics experiments; the film is certainly original, complex and almost completely cliche-free; however in the attempt to give an intelligent and authentic feel the dialogue is far too dense, and delivered too fast often to the extent of incomprehensibility; the film is therefore not very accessible, although watching with subtitles on helps a bit. I'm still glad I saw it.
Thing is, I don't agree with the main premise here which is that there aren't other intelligent time travel films. Many films in the last few years have found unusual ways of exploring time travel and related issues, often with a focus on emotion and soft sci-fi approaches; examples if you're prepared to look back include the Jacket, Donnie Darko, Twelve Monkeys. And Back to the Future is a fantastic film, I won't have a word said against it. There was also the recent Simon Wells remake of the Time Machine - disappointing in some ways, but I thought it saved itself by a logical, and as far as I can remember original, resolution of the time travel paradox.

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