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Primer (2004)

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Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Screenwriter/director Shane Carruth Rating:7.8/10 (5 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by ratethatcommentary on May 12th, 2005:Find all reviews by ratethatcommentary
There are some commentaries where the commentary-giver goes over the plot of the movie and tells you what's happening in the movie as you're watching it. Those are usually about as bad as commentaries get, since that's absolutely useless.

For this movie (one of the most confusing movies I've seen in a long time), I was actually hoping for some of that, and was disappointed to get very little discussion about the plot itself. Most of the commentary consists of production tidbits -- how they shot this scene without permission, where they got some prop from, how they did the one visual effect in the film, etc.

Some of it is interesting, but it's not the kind of information I was hoping to get out of this track. Every now and then he talks about the story itself (and even about plot elements once or twice), and these are far more interesting than the rest of the commentary. However, they are few and far between.

It's hard to say that this is a bad commentary; I've heard far worse. It's just that for this movie I was hoping for a different type of commentary, and this didn't deliver.
Reviewed by makarov on March 27th, 2012:Find all reviews by makarov
I found this commentary track with Shane Carruth to be quite good.

It's very informative about the production of the film. With a low budget film like this, that's exactly what I was hoping to hear. I never felt that Shane Carruth was getting bored with talking about the film.

There's a bit of overlap between the commentary tracks, my only negative. Overall they're both well worth listening, but if you have to choose one, I'd pick this one.
Commentary 2: Screenwriter/director Shane Carruth and assorted cast and crew Rating:4.2/10 (4 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by ratethatcommentary on May 12th, 2005:Find all reviews by ratethatcommentary
I can't recommend this track. If you really want to listen to a commentary for Primer, listen to the director's solo track. If you loved that track and want more, then maybe you should try this one, but otherwise it's not really worth it.

There's a lot of repetition between the two commentaries. The director even states that a number of times ("Well, I covered this in the other commentary...") but then proceeds to repeat himself anyway. This one has an even greater focus on production stories than the plot or the ideas behind the script, so was even less satisfying for me than the first one. The director even discusses his solo commentary in this track, saying that now that he thinks about it, it was a pretty technical commentary, and maybe that wasn't the best idea...

Interestingly, in the solo track he talks about something that was covered in this group track, giving the impression that the group commentary had already been recorded when he recorded the solo track. His comments in this track make it seem like it was the other way around. Maybe it's some kind of commentary time travel loop paradox thingy.

A mini-review of this track given by one of the participants during the commentary, at a point when they were being particularly uninformative: "God, we are pissing off a world of DVD watchers right now." It's not *that* bad (they're moderately funny at times) but I can't really recommend this one.