Primer

Primer. ERBP 2004.
Primer. ERBP 2004.

Before watching the movie:

I’m not sure how long ago this movie came to my attention. I think it might have been when this comic was published, which was roughly six years ago, but I’m not sure but that it hadn’t come up before then. It seems to have the reputation of being the densest time travel movie ever, but then it seems a vast majority of the audience couldn’t understand Back to the Future Part 2.

The most specific thing I know about the plot is that it concerns a time machine with rules often cited as probable for potential real time machines, but rarely used in fiction because it limits the kinds of stories that can be told. The title always makes me think of a textbook, but I think it’s more likely to be about priming the machine due to those operational restrictions.

Between the highly cerebral reputation, the independent production, and a synopsis I saw that is likely to just be describing the first scene in a zero-tolerance approach to spoilers, it seems entirely likely that this could be an hour and a half of two guys in a room talking about what they’re going to do with the machine and only at the end revealing the actual result. I have seen duller “people just talking” movies about mindbending concepts. (See Mindwalk, which adapted a nonfiction book about physics by having a few characters meander through an art gallery talking. Or maybe don’t.)

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