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New details on PRIMER’s Shane Carruth’s new project, A TOPIARY, arise

Joshua Brunsting

by: Joshua Brunsting
June 22nd, 2010

Shane Carruth TOPIARY

If there has ever been a film within the past decade or so that not enough people have seen, it’s Shane Carruth’s utter masterpiece of a sci-fi time travel film, PRIMER.

While the film in and of itself may be far too dense for those who aren’t the biggest proponents of time travel, it’s also one of, if not the most real and true take on the concept ever put to celluloid.  Simply put, it’s one of the past decades best sci-fi films, and is certainly in the conversation for taking the top slot.  See the damn thing.

Now, it has been some time since Carruth has talked or hinted at his new project, but that’s all changed. Today, io9 discovered a new website for the upcoming film, A TOPIARY, which reads “over and over you have been promised ADVENTURE but have not found it.” Cryptic, may just be the understatement of the year.

Well, The Playlist also nabbed a copy of the film’s script, and have some really interesting plot details:

The script begins with a head-scratching thirty minute prologue involving Acre Stowe, a municipal worker of an undisclosed city in the 1980s …  investigating strange starbursts he sees in the sky and eventually meets up with a group of people who are also researching this phenomenon and its consequences, amongst other scientific projects ranging in subject from thermochemistry to archaeology. The main story … revolves around ten boys aged seven to eleven living in a small rural town (Carruth is ambiguous in both location and time here) and takes up the remaining two hours of the film. The boys are in possession of a mysterious black box called a “Maker,” which in turn creates mysterious white discs called “funnels.” The group of kids are at once puzzled and fascinated by the nature of the box, and eventually manipulate the discs into other peculiarly named artifacts (petals, arcs, fronds, etc.). Their creations and constructions lead up to their manufacturing of seemingly sentient quasi-mechanical beings dubbed “Choruses.” Almost as if ‘Topiary’ were an abstract arthouse take on Pokémon, you can imagine the competition and troubles the beings create amongst the children.

An “abstract arthouse take on Pokemon” you say? Well sign me the hell up.

As the above prose should tell you, I absolutely adore PRIMER, and have been chomping at the bit to see what Carruth has had in store for us since I first saw it years ago on IFC.  This sounds completely bad ass, and just what I would hope from the filmmaker.

What do you think?

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