Upstream Color (2013)

Upstream Color (2013)



United States of America
Drama, Romance, Science Fiction
Amy Seimetz, Andreon Watson, Andrew Sensenig
96 min

What it's about

A man and woman are drawn together, entangled in the lifecycle of an ageless organism. Identity becomes an illusion as they struggle to assemble the loose fragments of wrecked lives.

The take

Nine years after his out-of-nowhere, mind-bending premier Primer, writer/producer/director/ star Shane Carruth returns with this exponentially more challenging feature—a neo sci-fi/drama/romance/thriller quite nearly impossible to describe effectively in words. Ostensibly focused upon a woman who has been drugged, brainwashed and robbed and is subsequently drawn to an unknown man who has experienced a similar theft, Carruth draws out the drama in a fractured narrative that challenges the viewer to piece together the dream-like story fragments and implications like a complicated puzzle. Certainly not "audience friendly" in any sort of traditional sense, I love how Carruth paints such an elaborate, intelligent tale in such a remarkably original manner. If this is the future of film, I'm definitely on board.


The best and the last of Carruth.

Carruth could have been the next Aronofsky. His 3 scripts (unreleased) following the success of “Primer” gave him access to assemble casts including the biggest names in Hollywood.

But Carruth didn’t ‘play ball’ and through his own actions, blacklisted himself from the industry. Instead of a 9 digit budget film, we get “Upstream Color”, a movie that pushes allegories to their logical paroxysm, and delivers a powerful , hypnotic narrative mixed with fantastic visuals not dissimilar from the best Gaspar Noe has to offer.

Overall, it’s his master piece, and my understand it will be his last film. On one hand, it’s hard to let go of ‘what could have been’ – especially when “UC” drops hints at that parallel history, ironically self-referencing his other , unseen and uncreated works.

A master piece that can only be truly appreciated on the Silver Screen.

Lushly filmed, surreal, complicated.

This is a movie with dense imagery and a plot that isn’t spoon-fed.

If you like your movies complicated, this is maybe one for you.

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