Seeing Upstream Color, written and directed by and co-starring Shane Carruth, at the Melbourne International Film Festival was a welcomingly refreshing experience. It’s a fantastic follow-up to Carruth’s Primer, which I consider more incomprehensible than Upstream Color, despite the realistic approach. As is the case with Primer, Upstream Color is quite challenging, and the abstract connections in the film make it even more so. Amy Seimetz and Shane Carruth pull of great performances as the lost and confused Kris and Jeff, and Carruth’s score is immersive and hypnotic – in fact the whole film has that magnetic quality to it.
Of course, as with Primer, multiple watchings and turning your brain cells to overdrive are probably necessary to fully understand the dream-like strangeness of it all – but then, that’s sort of the point. And if you need answers now, they are already waiting: