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Is "PRIMER" worth watching?


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#1 Ian Marks

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 05:17 PM

I've read about it but don't know anyone who's actually seen it. I know it was Super 16 - I'm wonder if there's anything particularly interesting about the cinematography. Thanks.
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#2 Scott Fritzshall

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 06:18 PM

The cinematography isn't fantastic, and he makes a lot of errors, but it's a really really interesting film, and I'd say it's certainly worth watching.
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#3 Josh Bass

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 06:22 PM

I actually liked a lot of his compositions and the color whatever they did to it. . .mostly. It had a lot of cool looks, to me.

As for the movie. . .I really wanted to like it, I did, but I had such a hard time understanding it on even the most fundamental level (who are these people? What are they doing, what the hell is going on?), that I kind of have to give it a resounding "meh". Maybe it was all the mumbling, or maybe the exposition was just poor. I'm not terribly stupid--I generally understand what's going on in a movie, but this one lost me. I get the basics, but still feel "left out".
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#4 Chris Burke

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 06:51 PM

I actually liked a lot of his compositions and the color whatever they did to it. . .mostly. It had a lot of cool looks, to me.

As for the movie. . .I really wanted to like it, I did, but I had such a hard time understanding it on even the most fundamental level (who are these people? What are they doing, what the hell is going on?), that I kind of have to give it a resounding "meh". Maybe it was all the mumbling, or maybe the exposition was just poor. I'm not terribly stupid--I generally understand what's going on in a movie, but this one lost me. I get the basics, but still feel "left out".



I second the above opinion. I wanted to like it too. I rented it at a Blockbuster, one which has a particularly lousy selection. So my point is that he suceeded as far as making a movie and finishing it and selling for a profit. Which is more than most people can say. So for that, watch it and say Hoorah! Everyone involved wore two or more hats and yes the acting was, "Meh". I think there biggest fault was that the story was more about the machine than the people, they needed to take time to develope the characters and make us like them more. The ending was rather confusing, after two viewings, I am still unsure. I watched it twice because I am starting the Super 16 phase of my movie making life and am watching as much super 16 cinema as I can find. I didn't mind the look at all, at least on DVD. They used 7274 and it looked quite nice, it fit the story rather well. I have seen far worse. Check it out.
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#5 Scott Fritzshall

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 08:04 PM

It's actually kind of on purpose that the second half is almost impossible to understand. It shows just how much they've screwed everything up. There's some explanation I found online that shows everything that happens using like 9 different timelines and 7 versions of each character or something like that. Apparently you actually can make sense of it. I thought it was pretty neat.

Composition wise, I thought he did a pretty good job, but all the different color temps in different locations aren't creative decisions; they're mistakes. It's not enough to really distract from the movie, but it's worth pointing out from a technical perspective.

I'm really disappointed that the director doesn't seem to be working on anything else currently. He's clearly a pretty talented guy, but if he doesn't push himself I'm afraid he'll be forgotten about.
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#6 Grainy

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 06:21 PM

I was really impressed by Primer. Maybe this isn't the forum for it, but I thought the shooting was "fine" and the production design very compelling. It didn't bother me that I didn't get what was going on. It's about time travel. It's going to be confusing if it's convincing. I found the whole thing very mysterious and a total home run for an indy film, especially in today's market where it seems like the ideas are getting recycled ad nauseum and gruesome rules the day (hostel).
G
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#7 Robert Glenn

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 07:37 PM

it's worth a look to see how the film stock he used performs.. he shot it all in available light
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#8 Craig Knowles

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 12:56 AM

Give it a look. I some issues with the story, but it's nice to see what they were able to create with so little. Several of the compositions are memorable as well - very 'Kubrick'.

That, and the commentary is worth the price of the rental.
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#9 Scott Larson

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Posted 27 January 2006 - 07:08 PM

Absolutely listen to the director's commentary. You'll find out a bunch of clever tricks and why some of them didn't work out as well as others.

I don't see why he thought he could shoot with available light in the outdoor fountain scene unless his light meter was too close to the lights. :(
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#10 jeremy edge

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 01:15 PM

Except for a few grainy ugly scenes I thought the movie looked good.

Its a good flick and you have to watch it a few times.You have to think about what's going on and the logistics of it.The time travel stuff can you really give you a headache but this guy's really thought through the "what if's" and in my opinion has made one of the more believable movies about time travel I've seen.

By his reasoning if you went back in time you could watch yourself get ready to get in the machine, or go up to yourself and say "hey ,dont get in that machine ,well go have some beers instead" and now you've created a clone of yourself.then your clone could go back in time in the machine when you're not looking and go back and do something to double cross you. It's confusing ,but it's kinda what the movie explores.
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