Fellow Film Club Members & Movie Buffs:


The theme for June is “Science Fiction–where Science

goes for its inspiration.”


Well, June is half spent, with the longest day of the year still not quite upon us. The Producers really hit Sci-Fi gold with the Cult film picked for Flag Day. The Tacoma Film Club is happy to screen PRIMER (2004). This incredible independent film is as famous for its miniscule budget ($7,000.00), as it is its very complex & interesting plot structure.

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The movie is written, directed, and produced by Shane Carruth, who also wrote the film’s musical score, and did the editing. Then, if that were not enough, he starred in it as Aaron, one of the two lead characters. He was a former software engineer, with a graduate degree in math. He studied Physics in order master the technical dialogue for this screenplay Staying in the film world, he collaborated on LOOPER (2012), and directed UPSTREAM COLOR (2013), that won a Special Jury Prize at Sundance in 2013. He was developing a new film with his friend, director Rian Johnson, A TOPIARY,  but the project fell through. He now has a new movie, THE MODERN OCEAN in pre-production. Carruth won the Best Writer/Director at the Nantucket Film Festival (2004). He has been compared often to director Darren Aronofsky.


Steven Soderbergh wrote: “I see Shane as the illegitimate offspring of both David Lynch and James Cameron.”


Trivia:  Carruth used a lot of friends & family to act in this film; most of the modest budget went for film stock. He very carefully story-boarded every moment, shooting only 80 minutes of film, and only cutting 3 minutes out of that for the final running time. They filmed it in six weeks in 2002 on the outskirts of Dallas, with a skeleton crew of five. It took him two years to post-produce the movie. The principles of time travel were inspired by Richard Feynman’s physics diagram–illustrating how it would become  elementary parallel loops, with no difference between watching an interaction happen forward or backward. There are a couple of technical blips where boom shadows, or a visible mike was not edited out. Even just playing at the Art Houses, the film made


$424,760.00 at the box office. Everyone was blown away by the sophisticated complex technical undiluted dialogue that Carruth never dumbed down, or apologized for. David Sullivan, who played Abe, moved to LA , and pursued an acting career. He has done a number of roles on television, like in JUSTIFIED, and appeared in KARMA POLICE (2008), SKATELAND (2010), and ARGO (2012). 


PRIMER (2004)


Written, Directed, & Produced by Shane Carruth @ 77 minutes.



The film stars Shane Carruth, David Sullivan, Casey Gooden,

and Carrie Crawford.


Synopsis:  Two engineers form a partnership and then invent a process for time travel, back several hours. Initially they use this process to gather wealth from the stock market, but soon dark consequences, paradoxes, and ethical quandaries descend

upon them.


Tagline: “ What happens if it actually works?”


This is a seldom-seen cult classic, filmed on a shoestring budget, that became the

winner of the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance in 2004.


Ebert & Roper wrote: “Like MEMENTO, this movie is ingenious and fascinating–and it never looks cheap, because every shot looks as it must look.”


Rotten Tomatoes gave it a Critic’s rating of 73%, and an Audience approval of 79%.

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A.O. Scott (NEW YORK TIMES) wrote: “Carruth had the skill, the guile, and the seriousness to turn a creaky philosophical gimmick into a dense & troubling

moral puzzle.”


Dennis Lim ( THE VILLAGE VOICE ) wrote: “This incredible film is the freshest thing the genre has seen since 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY.”


Chuck Klostermann wrote: “This is the finest movie on time travel I have ever seen, even though it can be hopelessly confusing and it does grow more Byzantine as it unravels. I have seen it eight times, and I’m still not sure what happened.”


J.R. Jones ( THE CHICAGO READER ) wrote: “This a film that is scary, puzzling, different, dense, obtuse, but still stimulating–a film for viewers that are ready for a cerebral challenge.”


So be sure to mark your calendars for this Friday, June 14, 2013, and join the TFC for our screening of Shane Carruth’s mind-bending film, PRIMER (2004). It will screen at the Center for Spiritual Living, located at 206 North J Street, on the corner of Division and J, across the street from the Group Health Hospital. Arrive early, around 6:15 p.m, and assist in hanging our summer black out curtains, or gather downstairs in the dining area for fellowship. The kitchen is being remodeled, but there are three tables available for our getting together. It is permitted for some of us to bring snacks & beverages, including wine, to share with others–but please keep in mind that no food or drink can be brought upstairs into the sanctuary while watching the movie. A donation box is found upstairs, and these donations help the Club in paying rent to CSL, as well as other TFC expenses. The film will screen at 7:15 p.m. and it runs a short 77 minutes, so we will be finished by 9 p.m. Anyone who wishes, can stick around for more visiting, or to assist in taking down the black out curtains. See you at the movies!






3 thoughts on “PRIMER @ CSL

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