Primer is a Super 16mm film by Shane Carruth that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January, where it won two major prizes and a fair amount of acclaim. As far as I can make out from the trailer (click here for 10mb QuickTime version) and various websites, the story is about four men build error-checking devices in their spare time. Through trial and error, they build a (time travel?) device that two of them realise is too valuable to market. The strapline for the film – “If you always want what you can’t have, what do you want when you can have anything?” – hints at the potential of such a scenario. Viewer opinion seems polarised with some geeks and science fiends giving it a thumbs up whilst others scratch their heads and dismiss it as claptrap. I’d like to see it and make up my own mind but, as it isn’t even released in the US until October, I doubt it will reach the UK any time soon and then maybe only as a DVD.
Meanwhile, closer to home, I am looking forward to some extended couch time over the next 72 hours as I watch the always-watchableand grossly under-used Ken Stott in the BBC’s Messiah III. The two previous two-parters, written by Lizzie Mickery, have been excellent examples of a genre the BBC do so well – taut scripted, finely crafted, well acted psychological dramas.