Search - Primer on DVD

Actors: Shane Carruth, David Sullivan, Casey Gooden, Anand Upadhyaya, Carrie Crawford
Director: Shane Carruth
Genres: Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
PG-13     2005     1hr 17min

Everything you think you know about modern science ia about to unravel in this critically acclaimed film about two young engineers & the consequences they face when they invent a machine that enables them to travel back in...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Shane Carruth, David Sullivan, Casey Gooden, Anand Upadhyaya, Carrie Crawford
Director: Shane Carruth
Creator: Shane Carruth
Genres: Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Drama, Science Fiction, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: New Line Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 04/19/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2004
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 1hr 17min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 70
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish

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Member Movie Reviews

Roland V. (AlHazred) from PISCATAWAY, NJ
Reviewed on 8/12/2014...
Primer is one of those movies where, when the movie's over, you sit there wondering what you just watched. It bears repeated viewing due to the subtleties of the plot, but it's an enjoyable sort of repeat viewing.

The movie works due to the earnest performances of the cast, the good writing, and the style in which it was shot, which lends a sense of reality to the events depicted. The realism is a key element -- many time travel movies fail precisely because they lack verisimilitude.

Movie Reviews

The Permutations are Endless
Mark Jones | Watkinsville, GA United States | 04/23/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The "whole package" is what this movie is about. It would seem that the intangibles combined with the intentional-create a synergy that captivates the mind!

"The permutations are endless" well sums up the movie. What would you do...if you could have perfect hindsight and foresight-how long would your altruism and your noble idealism last?

It's so dimensional you will watch it over and over. I read where some feel they have it figured out, but the sage advice comes from a fan that says "stop reading and keep watching!"

The low-budget while evident at times, actually adds to the mystique. I found myself annoyed by the slightly muffled and sometimes garbled soundtrack-which incidentally improved towards the middle (probably as Shane developed his prowess with audio and the actors begin to project a bit more). The graininess of the film shows through at times, but once again- it sets the mood and actually looks very intentional. Yet, that very tension actually sets you up for the true impact-when you realize the "permutations are endless."

"Primer" is one of those very rare movies that comes along to give Hollywood a real kick in the pants-to say "THIS is how you create a thriller"-it's in the heart, not in the budget. It's amazing what $7k and a man with a vision can do!

Primer is already a cult classic and will be discussed for years to come. It's definitely not for everyone, but for those who enjoy heady, multi-dimensional movies-it will remain a standard."
It's Supposed to Be Confusing
David E. Reynolds | Lansing, MI United States | 11/14/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)


Plot Summary Two friends and research entrepreneurs serendipitously develop a time travel machine. Thankfully free from an overt attempt to try to articulate the technical solution to time travel, the movie deals with the progressive temptations the friends face as they plunge deeper into a dizzying map of future-past interdependencies. They make the expected exploitation of the stock market but their dabblings with the relationship between future and past and present begin to be concerned with friends and family. As they do this, the movie becomes increasingly confusing due to the complexities of the causalities and changes they are working in the lives of other people.

Script The script is pretty solid, especially considering the complexity of the story line. The dialogue is natural, to the point where I wondered if most of it was improvised.

Acting and Character Development Surprisingly good. The two primary characters play off each other well. Their dialogue together is natural and real. They have a best-friend chemistry together.

Cinematography and Editing The cinematography is remarkable for a low budget independent movie. The color is great, the composition is creative and it helps tell the story. It does this by creating uncertainty in the time frame during their iterations of time travel. Toward the last third of the movie, the editing becomes very confusing: the protagonists are shuffling their time trips and this makes the storyline difficult to follow. I say this is good because I think that was the intent. They wanted to convey that there was complexity and uncertainty associated the implications of time travel. The audience is confused because they are confused and uncertain.

The movie is compelling. I kept thinking throughout the movie how remarkable it was that it was such a well made movie. The acting, the concept, the script... it all comes together to create a compelling movie. Yes, it is not clear and confusing.

Look, let me tell you a story.

About ten years ago, I was into John Steinbeck. I read many of his novels: Grapes of Wrath, East of Eden, To A God Unknown, Of Mice and Men, The Winter of Our Discontent, Tortilla Flat, Cannery Row, The Pearl, Acts of King Arthur.

So, have you ever read The Grapes of Wrath? Man, it's not a pleasant read. Ponderous is the world that comes to mind. I finish the novel on Thanksgiving weekend. I happen to be sick from food poisoning due to some lovely Wendy's food. The incessant dry heaves only added to the monotony of The Grapes of Wrath. When I finished the book, I tossed it down and said, "Man, that was ponderous." And then I realized the brilliance of Steinbeck. He wanted me to feel what the intinerant farmers felt.

Primer is confusing because that's what the two men felt. It's confusing to you because it was confusing to them."
Unconventionally Fresh
A. B. Lopez | Anchorage, Alaska | 03/27/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I saw this film on a whim with little knowledge of the story or acclaims. My physics background definitely helped me get a better grasp of the complex subject matter. Don't get me wrong, I left the theatre as dazed and confused as most people did. But, it was somewhere along the lines of complete awe.

This film is probably one of the best films I've seen dealing with time travel. The grainy, washed out quality of the film gave it a realistic documentary style. I didn't see the comparisons with Memento that most people refer to. The feeling I got from the movie was closer to the intesity I felt when I watched The Insider. I just felt tense and uneasy as the characters fiddled with their new "toy". The soundtrack had a very good ambient touch that helped add emphasis to the seriousness of the film.

So, in short; if you like intellectual, intense, dramatic, sci-fi movies, then you'll like this film. And, yes it may be a little to artsy for some. If Timecop is your favorite movie then you probably won't like Primer (jab)."