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As the years go by I find it harder and harder to muster the same levels of enthusiasm for certain films that I used to have, particularly with regard to those that I watched repeatedly during my teenage and student years. James Cameron’s Aliens is one of them: I still like it, but the fact is I’ve probably seen it at least half a dozen times over the years, and so familiarity has lessened the film’s impact considerably. However, I’d never had the chance to see it on the big screen until last week; to coincide with the 30th anniversary of its release, London’s Prince Charles Cinema has recently been showing Aliens in 70mm to packed audiences, so it seemed like a good opportunity to check it out one last time. After this I doubt I’ll watch it again … life’s too short and there’s so much more I’d rather spend my time seeing. Like…er…Ghostbusters reboots and Now You See Me sequels.

I wouldn’t say that the experience has changed my opinion on the film in any way, but for what it’s worth I enjoyed it and still think Aliens stands up today as being one of the high watermarks of 1980’s action or science fiction movies. After all, primarily thanks to Cameron’s adept handling of tense, bullet-heavy sequences – and his raging hard-on for military grade hardware – Aliens is still great fun to watch, even though the more downbeat moments within the film are occasionally a little rough around the edges. Some of the acting by those playing marines, for example, is decidedly ropey, although it’s true that the biggest culprit – Bill Paxton –  manages to turn a largely forgettable character into a memorable one thanks to his enjoyably over-the-top surf dude performance; his ‘Game over, maaaaaan, game over!’ is the film’s second most quoted line after Sigourney Weaver’s ‘Get away from her, you bitch!’, and both predictably drew applause and cheers during the screening. Similarly amusing is Al Matthews as the cigar-chomping, wide-eyed Sergeant Apone, a character who lights up within two seconds of waking up from stasis and who sadly bites the big one far too soon, though it does at least save the audience from any more overacting. Then there’s Jenette Goldstein (Vasquez) and Michael Biehn (Hicks), both delivering stellar performances while they’re running around, shouting and shooting at aliens, but both showing their limitations each time they’re required to slow down and talk things through with Weaver’s Ripley. Still, as we all know there are some really strong performances here alongside the more colourful and cartoonish ones: Lance Henriksen is pretty good in his brief scenes as the android Bishop and Paul Reiser makes a decent fist of the slimy and self-centred corporate suit Burke. But this is Weaver’s film, and she is superb (again) as Ripley, the lone survivor from the first story who must conquer her nightmares by returning to the scene of earlier devestation. She picked up an Oscar nomination for her performance, and rightly so; what’s more – even though she eventually lost out to Children Of A Lesser God‘s Marlee Matlin – it was received during an era when the Academy still sniffed haughtily at all things sci-fi.

They were fine in 1986, but some of the effects have understandably dated, although it must be said that the actual alien effects hold up just fine and all the elements surrounding the creatures in their slimy lair still look great today. With the notable exception of the aliens themselves the special effects were always of less importance to this mood-heavy franchise than a lot of other sci-fi of the era anyway; I personally think that you remember the Alien films because of the look of the monsters as well as the dirty, dingy, industrial production design, rather than the quality of the shots of spaceships flying through the sky. Cameron continued with Scott’s ‘truckers in space’ motif for his sequel, and once again everything’s battered and used and feels like it’s about to break down. And there’s so much heavy machinery everywhere! One of the director’s masterstrokes was to incorporate a giant forklift exoskeleton in the final battle, making for an evenly-matched fight to the death that is surely this film’s one truly great scene (though even that titanic scrap falls some way short of the greatness of the chestburster scene in Alien).

As with Alien, masculine and corporate aggression and arrogance are punished here in a terrifyingly brutal fashion, although the two films were entirely different beasts: Cameron’s sequel is the all-guns-blazing battle royale after the slow, disconcerting build up of Ridley Scott’s original, and the action is certainly intense and frightening here, as numerous aliens scuttle along vents and under floor panels, stalking the human prey. It’s difficult to compare the two – Scott made a horror film set in space and Cameron followed it up with a war film set in space – but this latest viewing has cemented my belief that Scott’s film is superior, mainly because it came first, created many of the series’ themes and established the two major characters: the alien and Ripley. There are, of course, plenty of reasons why I’ve watched Cameron’s blistering, flame-throwing funfest so many times over the years, though. So yeah, it’s still a blast thirty years later, but I think I’ve had my fill now.

Note: This screening was for the film’s 30th anniversary so the cinema showed the original version. As everyone knows the Special Edition director’s cut is better AND shootier and that’s the version I’ve generally watched in the past.

Directed by: James Cameron.
Written by: James Cameron. Story by James Cameron, David Giler, Walter Hill.
Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Paul Reiser, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein, Carrie Henn, Bill Paxton, William Hope, Al Matthews.
Cinematography: Adrian Biddle.
Editing: Ray Lovejoy.
Music:
James Horner.
Certificate:
18.
Running Time:
137 minutes.
Year:
1986.

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Well, I suppose if anyone can claim to be the originator of all this wanton city destruction we now have to sit through year after year it’s Roland Emmerich, and this summer he’s back to up the stakes. This sequel to his 1996 blockbuster Independence Day hits most of the same notes as the original – good and bad – but it’s altogether bigger and louder and smashier, with a giant 3,000 mile-wide mothership rudely touching down over the entire Atlantic Ocean and carrying a fresh threat to humanity’s existence, partly from its cumbersome landing and partly from the intelligent alien queen on board (a great, hulking kaiju who’s here to kill everyone and mist up Jeff Goldblum’s glasses). Joining Goldblum from the earlier film are Bill Pullman, Brent Spiner and Judd Hirsch, while there are brief returns for Robert Loggia and Vivica A. Fox, the latter appearing for one scene only which sadly also happens to be one of the most cringeworthy in the entire movie. There are several new cast members, too: William Fichtner dons military fatigues for the 4,000th time in his career; Jessie Usher plays the son of Will Smith’s now-deceased hero from the first film; charisma vortex Liam Hemsworth plays a cocky and insubordinate young pilot (sheesh); It Follows star Maika Monroe is a fellow pilot and also the daughter of Pullman’s former President Whitmore; Deobia Oparei is a Congolese warlord who is shoehorned into the story as a concession to international diversity; and likewise the Chinese singer, model and actress Angelababy, who plays yet another good-looking ace pilot. Otherwise, much like the first film, it’s all Americans saving the day as nomads and Buddhist monks gather round CB radios in hope that a few people with shiny teeth and good complexions can kick some alien butt. Oh, and did I mention that it also stars Charlotte Gainsbourg? No? Independence Day: Regurgitation stars Charlotte Fucking Gainsbourg!

Sadly no-one – except for the dependably-witty Goldblum – comes out of the film with any credit, but the quality of performances seems somewhat beside the point in a film that’s so reliant on fantastic spectacle to the detriment of…well…everything else. You know exactly what you’re going to get. Emmerich’s film is full of portentous, rumbling basslines as the giant alien ship moves into view, its arrival on Earth causing a flurry of CGI tsunamis and exploding buildings (Singapore and London draw the short straw and are wiped out, which is Emmerich’s equivalent of leaving a poor review on TripAdvisor). The aliens duly hand us our asses on a plate, but when all looks to be lost – as per the first film – the screenplay unleashes the spirited ‘Murican fightback via the magical means of motivational speech. Humanity goes for broke, lots of lasers go pewpewpew, Liam Hemsworth shouts ‘whoah!’ and ‘hang on!’ a lot as he flies around, and the director finds plenty of time for quips, jokes and sentimental moments as Earth’s time runs out. It seems as if almost everyone involved in the final stand at Area 51 in Nevada is either related or in love, and though the preponderance of unrealistic occurrences and coincidences that brings them all together is utterly ludicrous, one only has to remember that this is a world in which mad scientists can defeat entire advanced alien races with malware, so I guess it’s just something you have to go with. As an old hand at this kind of thing Emmerich knows what pushes the buttons of audiences containing a healthy portion of dimwits, and he’s not averse to throwing the age-old cliche of a busload of cute kids and a loveable dog in distress into the mix, in an attempt to up the stakes or the audience’s emotional response (this after seeing London, Singapore and much of the eastern seaboard of the US wiped out in around five minutes flat). It’s as dumb as it is ridiculous, of course, and countless plot holes appear before we arrive at an ending, but whatever: people will go in their droves to watch the smashy boomy loudy spaceship blow everything up, and so there’s that.

Directed by: Roland Emmerich.
Written by: Roland Emmerich, Dean Devlin, Nicolas Wright, James A. Woods, James Vanderbilt.
Starring: Jeff Goldblum, Liam Hemsworth, Jessie T. Usher, Maika Monroe, Bill Pullman, William Fichtner, Sela Ward, Judd Hirsch, Brent Spiner, Vivica A. Fox, Angelababy, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Travis Tope, Deobia Oparei.
Cinematography: Markus Förderer.
Editing: Adam Wolfe.
Music:
Harold Klose, Thomas Wanker.
Certificate:
12A.
Running Time:
129 minutes.
Year:
2016.

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An opening montage in this cult, late-1980s sci-fi reveals that 300,000 alien slave workers have made Earth their home after crashlanding on the planet three years earlier, and that attempts have been made to assimilate these humanoids into Los Angeles society, though this hasn’t been easy – as the title pun suggests – and the ‘newcomers’ still tend to stand out; they’re the ones with the weird skull markings who are getting drunk on sour milk. Unfortunately the aliens are not yet fully trusted by their human Angeleno counterparts, who derogatorily refer to them as ‘slags’, while the race’s superior strength and cognitive ability has caused further rifts as employers opt for cheap and hard-working alien labour over lazy, problematic humans. All of which serves as the backdrop for a mildly-entertaining mix of sci-fi and buddy cop movie, with James Caan as the grizzled detective investigating the death of his partner, who is killed by an alien gunman as he investigates a robbery. Naturally his superiors think the best course of action following this stressful event is to pair Caan’s rule-breaking plainclothes officer with a by-the-book newly-promoted alien detective named Sam Francisco (the aliens have been given silly names, which becomes a half-decent running joke), and it falls upon the two of them to solve a related murder and take down the drug baron connecting both cases. And so we have two more mismatched cinematic cop partners: human/alien, rule-breaker/rule-follower, etc.

A transparent allegory for immigration and racism in the US it may be, but there’s plenty of fun to be had from immersing oneself in Alien Nation‘s world, which is at times so silly it even includes an evil humanoid henchman who goes by the name of ‘Rudyard Kipling’. The screenplay doesn’t delve too deeply into the whys and wherefores, and that left enough mileage in the premise for a spin-off TV series and a bunch of TV movies, though I presume none of these quite hit the just-about-mediocre heights of this original. In terms of the cast, it’s amusing watching a clearly-unfit Caan gamely trying his best during all the scenes of running, shooting and fighting, while Mandy Patinkin adds some light comic touches as the alien detective who gradually wins his partner’s trust. Terence Stamp is flat-out awful as a by-the-numbers villain, but his performance simply adds to the overall fun; he was clearly ordering extra ham on his sandwiches during production. So, not to be taken too seriously, by any means, but it is a shame that the film doesn’t measure up to the likes of 48 Hours and Lethal Weapon and it’s disappointing that the screenplay doesn’t follow up on the interesting questions it asks during the first act. Incredibly it was given an 18 certificate on release, which might suggest a tougher, grittier film than is actually the case, while as with most second-rate sci-fi of the era you wonder what Paul Verhoeven might have done with the project.

Directed by: Graham Baker.
Written by: Rockne S. O’Bannon.
Starring: James Caan, Mandy Patinkin, Terence Stamp.
Cinematography: Adam Greenberg.
Editing: Kent Beyda.
Music:
Curt Sobel.
Certificate:
18.
Running Time:
91 minutes.
Year:
1988.

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imageI’ll try and think of something positive to say about M. Night Shyamalan’s After Earth while I write this short review, and hopefully by the end I’ll have come up with something, but I’m certainly not willing to make any promises at this early stage. In the meantime it will be easier to give you several reasons why I hold this joyless sci-fi blockbuster, set 1,000 years in the future, in contempt; and yes, given that I’m reviewing a film that was savaged by critics upon its release a couple of years ago, I freely admit that I will have little to say that hasn’t already been said.

First and foremost is the low standard of the acting: both Will Smith and son Jaden who previously appeared together in The Pursuit Of Happyness – are dismal in this film, playing a dreary father-son team with unresolved issues and a penchant for grimacing. In fairness to the pair both of their characters are poorly written by Shyamalan and Gary Whitta, and they have to plough through a lot of bad, cliché-ridden dialogue, much of which is apparently laden with Scientology-related subtext. Legendary military warrior dad Cypher Raige (yes!) is as serious as they come and spends the entire film lying prostrate with a scowl across his fizzog, while son Kitai is a sullen, walking disappointment who shows few signs of following in Cypher’s footsteps. This is problematic enough in itself, but complicating their relationship further is the fact that both characters blame themselves and each other for the death of another family member at the hands of the Ursa, giant bug-like monsters who have attacked humanity on the newly-colonized planet Nova Prime. Cypher and Kitai tediously carry on like this until a traumatic incident predictably and conveniently irons out their long-standing problems. The dreadful screenplay also includes more dimwit-friendly plot exposition and supremely naff ‘Fire up the Aldi Beam and plot the jump to the Lidl Sector’ tripe than you can shake an angry stick at.

Um, what else? The CGI is disappointing at times. There are a couple of half-hearted scenes in deep space at the beginning of the story, but much of the action takes place on an Earth that has become inhospitable to humans, and though we don’t see much of the animal life we do get a few unintentional laughs when a troupe of giant, fake-looking baboons appears for five minutes. The Ursa creatures we see also fail to convince, which is a shame considering the film’s hefty budget of (at least) $130 million. The story is dull, the pace is plodding, the same flashback is repeated over and over and over again, and throughout Will Smith seems determined to destroy his reputation as a charismatic, fun-to-watch blockbuster actor. In short it’s a disaster, though naturally it went on to make a considerable profit at the box office, so let’s just ponder how awful the world is for a minute before weeping at the fact this has allowed Shyamalan to continue making utter dreck. I really don’t want to waste any more time or energy writing about After Earth, but at least in doing so I have thought of something positive to say: a number of matte paintings are used for the giant vistas of futuristic Earth, which kind of resembles prehistoric Earth, and whoever made them is clearly very talented. But that is all.

Directed by: M. Night Shyamalan.
Written by: M. Night Shyamalan, Gary Whitta.
Starring: Will Smith, Jaden Smith, Sophie Okonedo.
Cinematography: Peter Suschitzky.
Editing: Steven Rosenblum.
Music: James Newton Howard.
Certificate:
12A.
Running Time:
100 minutes.
Year:
2013.

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fullwidth.45207dfaThere are echoes of the plots of several other science fiction movies in this mind-bending time travel tale by the Spierig Brothers, but the source material Robert A. Heinlein’s short story ‘—All You Zombies—’ predates most, including Rian Johnson’s Looper, which in terms of recent years is arguably Predestination‘s closest cousin. Another comparison could be made with Minority Report; Heinlein’s tale was published in 1959 by Fantasy And Science Fiction magazine after it was rejected by Playboy, just three years after Philip K. Dick published the short that inspired Steven Spielberg’s movie, and both are concerned in one way or another with unaccountable state powers that can stop crimes before they happen. Yet stylistically Predestination is a very differeny beast to both Looper and Minority Report: the Spierigs have worked with a relatively small budget of $5 million here and their B-movie isn’t driven by big names, action sequences or special effects (not that Looper was overly-reliant on the latter either). Thus the big name here is Ethan Hawke rather than a Cruise or a Willis, and the device his time traveller uses to jump back and forth from one year to another is a simple violin case; additionally Predestination‘s biggest set piece involves a bomb so weak it only gives the person standing right next it some facial burns upon detination.

Hawke’s character is travelling back and forth in time as an employee of the Temporal Bureau, an organisation that sends its agents to the past so that they can make preemptive strikes at the scenes of crimes before they are committed, thereby stopping them from ever occuring. His target, in the early-1970s, is a terrorist dubbed ‘the P_00809.000-640x360Fizzle Bomber’, who is seemingly intent on wreaking havoc throughout New York City. And it’s there that the agent works undercover, as a bartender, eventually meeting writer John (Sarah Snook). John’s life story is told in a lengthy first act flashback, involving an orphanage, a fleeting romance and a gender reassignment, but to say more would be unfair to anyone reading who is yet to see the film. Suffice it to say John talks and the agent listens, their respective fates becoming slowly entwined over beer and peanuts.

Predestination is an entertaining puzzle thriller, one that delights in zipping back-and-forth between the years and challenging its audience to keep up or figure out where it is going (unlike my recent viewing of Primer I had no trouble following this plot or second-guessing the ending). Some effort is made by the Spierigs to answer the questions and issues raised by time travel, and by and large they have fun with the premise, even if the device of characters disappearing from one room and appearing suddenly in another time and place feels far too familiar in the modern age. The Fizzle Bomber is entirely their invention, and as MacGuffins go it’s not too bad, though the character’s brief appearances are lacking in any real menace. Occasionally some poorly-written dialogue pops up, but the Spierigs version of Heinlein’s story is well constructed and they get to grips with the central theme of identity, displaying more than just token interest in the experiences of their intersex character.

Directed by: Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig.
Written by: Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig. Based on ‘—All You Zombies—’ by Robert A. Heinlein.
Starring: Ethan Hawke, Sarah Snook, Noah Taylor.
Cinematography: Ben Nott.
Editing: Matt Villa.
Music: Peter Spierig.
Certificate: 15.
Running Time: 97 minutes.
Year: 2014.

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martian-sitsOnce you have accepted the premise that NASA has successfully landed astronauts on Mars in the not-too-distant future, perhaps the most surprising thing about Ridley Scott’s The Martian is the upbeat tone of this castaway tale: Matt Damon’s stranded astro-botanist Mark Watney spends much of the movie cracking wise as he records video diaries and explains exactly what he’s doing in order to survive on the red planet, and there’s very little exploration of the post-traumatic stress, misery and doubt that Watney and the crew members who abandoned him would surely experience in such a situation. Perhaps retaining a sense of humour in the face of extreme adversity is the only way to survive on Mars, completely alone, without going insane. The frothy, light touch here certainly makes for an interesting comparison with Gravity or last year’s autumn sci-fi epic Interstellar, a bombastic outer space movie that took itself way too seriously (though there were occasional light-hearted moments involving that particular film’s robot). And what’s this? A disco soundtrack? Gloria Gaynor was one of the last acts I was expecting to hear.

At the start of the film we find Watney and his crew conducting experiments on the planet’s surface. There are early signs that Scott has opted for a bloated cast packed with familiar faces as Watney jokes with Jessica Chastain’s commander Lewis and Michael Peña’s astronaut Martinez; the crew is completed by characters played by Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan and Aksel Hennie, all three up-and-coming stars. Soon enough an extreme dust storm threatens their collective safety and forces the intrepid astronauts to leave for Earth, but an the-martian-jessica-chastainaccident occurs, leading them to believe that Watney is dead, and they depart without him. But no! Our Mark manages to keep oxygen in his ripped space suit thanks to some implausible nonsense about shrapnel blocking the hole, and soon enough we’re following Watney’s attempts to grow potatoes out of his own faeces and establish communication links with NASA, which is apparently headed up by just four people (Jeff Daniels, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sean Bean, Kristen Wiig). This small band of executives and spin doctors back on Earth plot rescue missions with Californian scientists (Benedict Wong and Donald Glover both make the most of their minor roles) and contact Watney’s old crew members. He’s alive! There’s hope! Let’s go get our boy! And so on and so forth.

You’re not supposed to over-think The Martian, which is fine, but the film simply fails to get to grips with the mental state of Damon’s character, and instead unquestionably embraces the triumph of the human spirit and the notion of good humour willing out in the face of adversity. Watney remains relentlessly chipper throughout, aside from one or two instances where he punches things after setbacks occur, and he only displays outward signs of emotional fragility at the end of the film. This is a man who has been left for dead (on Mars, no less), has little to eat except for potatoes for hundreds of days on end, can only entertain himself with a poor collection of disco hits or a Happy Days box set (although we never get to see what he does with his surplus spuds) and is the subject of a rescue plan that requires him to head into space in a tin can covered with tarpaulin. Surely we should see him weep about his lot once or twice, rather than simply joke about it?

That said, I must admit I enjoyed being surprised by The Martian, and part of that surprise derives from the uplifting and comic tone, which is completely contrary to the human perservation story norm. I haven’t read Andy Weir’s source novel (adapted for the screen here by Drew Goddard) but I gather both book and screenplay are united in ditching the typically melodramatic links with home one would normally find in such tales, however far away the stranded protagonist may be; as such there’s no worried wife or cute little moppet waiting for dad to return, just a brief mention of a message Mark would like to be passed on to his parents, who we never actually see. This, coupled with the breezy, jokey nature, confounded my expectations. But I also feel like I can’t give The Martian an easy ride: too often the narrative is clumsily driven by people reading emails aloud, and the film’s inherent cheesiness may eventually test your patience, as it did mine. The final five minutes are particularly mawkish, and I also found myself cringing through many of the NASA-centric scenes; a subplot involving the China National Space The-Martian-Donald-GloverAdministration is unintentionally amusing (even though the Chinese authorities help with the rescue, Scott’s film descends into an unapologetic exercise in ‘Murican flag-waving by the end), while there’s far too much whooping and hollering and high-fiving at Mission Control throughout. I’m also ambivalent about seeing actors who have been excellent in bigger parts recently (such as Wiig, Chastain and Ejiofor) in smaller roles here. They’re all fine, though Wiig’s comic talents are curiously underplayed in what is essentially a fairly comic film, but in the past two or three years you could argue that each actor has developed beyond the point of playing second fiddle to Matt Damon. And I say that as a fan of Damon; he is a proper, old school movie star and he carries this film commendably, especially considering he’s all alone for most of it (Watney has no HAL 9000 or GERTY for company, sadly). All said it’s an enjoyable crowdpleaser, and one of Scott’s better films of recent years, but let’s not get carried away by all the hype. It isn’t a patch on earlier sci-fi masterpieces like this or this.

Directed by: Ridley Scott.
Written by: Drew Goddard. Based on The Martian by Andy Weir.
Starring: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Jeff Daniels, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Peña, Kristen Wiig, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Wong, Aksel Hennie, Donald Glover.
Cinematography: Dariusz Wolski.
Editing: Pietro Scalia.
Music: Harry Gregson-Williams, Various.
Certificate: 12A.
Running Time: 141 minutes.
Year: 2015.

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primer_05__largeI feel somewhat conflicted with regards to Primer, Shane Carruth’s low budget debut, which is probably best described as a film that puts the ‘science’ back into ‘science fiction’. On the one hand I feel I must add my voice to the many that have lauded Carruth for being able to make a film for as little as $7,000, with added props of course for getting it distributed, and I should also state how much I admire his multi-talented DIY approach: as well as being the writer, director and editor Carruth is also one of the two leads in Primer, while he even found time to compose and play the music on the soundtrack. It’s also interesting to see the earliest work of a filmmaker who completely refuses to compromise his material by dumbing-down in order to attract or appease a larger audience; several years later the resolutely anti-Hollywood Carruth followed this perplexing story about time travel with another (less confusing, though still oblique) sci-fi picture called Upstream Colour, which I liked very much even though I had to refer to Wikipedia’s plot summary several times while watching it.

On the other hand that’s the main reason that Primer is such a slog. It may only be 74 minutes long but Carruth’s insistence on making few (if any) concessions for people without a scientific or technical background seems a little too stubborn, even though those watching ten years after the film’s initial release, like me, can refer to handy diagrams like this while viewing. So what we have here is a situation where a filmmaker is doing something I wholeheartedly approve of making an uncompromising movie that is designed to make its watching audience think but has perhaps taken too much of a hardline stance, to the point where personally I haven’t enjoyed it at all. Time travel is a sticky, tricky concept to get your head around, and it’s certainly refreshing to see a filmmaker attempt to get to grips with the ideas surrounding it in such a thorough fashion, when most steer well clear of the numerous questions that are inevitably thrown up. Carruth’s background in mathematics and engineering ensures a degree of authenticity with regard to the dialogue and the plot (in a nutshell: two engineers stumble across a (the?) recipe for time travel while conducting experiments in a garage and a lock-up unit, which makes a change from watching mop-headed middle class teenagers do the same), and there’s no doubt that the story has been meticulously planned, but I couldn’t follow it at all, and even the explanations I’ve subsequently read have left me scratching my head in vain. Carruth’s interest in surface textures is evident here though it is more prominent in his second work and there’s some interesting editing to bring life to what is, essentially, a series of scenes featuring two guys (played by Carruth and David Sullivan) saying very complicated things. I like the story of the film’s production more than I like the film itself.

Directed by: Shane Carruth.
Written by: Shane Carruth.
Starring: Shane Carruth, David Sullivan.
Cinematography: Troy Dick.
Editing: Shane Carruth.
Music: Shane Carruth.
Certificate: 12A.
Running Time: 77 minutes.
Year: 2004.

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