Time for some time-travelling timelines

Time for some time-travelling timelines

Doug and Tony in the Time Tunnel
Doug and Tony in the Time Tunnel
I guess it's too late now, but I've started to think of Primer (2004) as the movie I had always wanted to make.

My idea (which first occurred to me around age 15) was to take a simple story, add a trip back in time, then another and another ad nauseam, until the original timeline became a multi-scored palimpsest of convoluted causes and effects, a Rubik's puzzle of narrative that would keep the audience scratching their heads for a decade.

Though it galled me somewhat, I was delighted to see it finally come to life on the big screen, sadly not written by me. This one-man show from Shane Carruth, who incidentally hasn't followed up on it yet, provides us with a tense and atmospheric low budget sci-fi drama, and proves yet again that good ideas are better than pots of money (see Wild Wild West, 10,000 B.C., Mummy:Dragon Emperor).

For those of you with a logical mind, who are perhaps slightly obsessive compulsive, and wish doggedly to follow Primer's labyrinthine plot all the way up its own rectum, here's a handy tool.

The Primer Timeline.

Too big to fit on A4, you'll have to borrow the A3 printer at work to churn out your own copy of this mammoth Moscow Underground-style plot map. Then sit down with the DVD, the remote and a huge bucket of popcorn. Good luck.

Another time-travelling epic, the focus of much pub debate regarding internal inconsistencies, is the Back To The Future (1985-90) trilogy.

How did Old Biff, after giving himself the sports almanac in 1955, return to the same 2015 from whence he left?

If Doc takes Jennifer and Marty from 1985 to 2015, how can they exist there and have kids?

These and a multitude of other FAQs are painstakingly dealt with at the BTTF site. But once again for the OCD sufferer in you, there is also a comprehensive timeline.

For wider reading, I can suggest this exhaustive website which delves deeper into the temporal inconguities and inconsistencies of the movies than mortal man was meant to delve. From The Terminator to 12 Monkeys, from Planet Of The Apes to Bill And Ted, they're all here folks. Go crazy.

And finally, the current season of TV's Lost has now revealled that the main secret of the island is its time-travelling peculiarities. A website called Time Loop Theory covers all aspects of this in depth. Here's their simple timeline which covers three seperate realities.

See you all again yesterday.

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