Prime – 2005

Submitted by: Nina Walker


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So Bad it Should Have Come with a Life Vest: A Review of the Movie Prime

Meryl Streep, and Uma Thurman you say? This film must have some redeeming value. Meryl Streep did do her best to make a real human out of the Jewish mother stereotype they tried to pass off as her character, but that’s the best compliment this film is going to get from me. Sniveling nerd man, Bryan Greenburg, was out of place and awkward as the romantic lead.  In the first scene that shows him and his gratuitous “goofy sidekick” driving together, I couldn’t figure out which one of them was supposed to be the goofy one. I couldn’t believe the cheesy bro-dialog they tried to pass off as laughs between the two of them. Yeah DUDE we are so hip and funny.

The thing that bothered me the most about this movie was this strange racist overtones that at times had my jaw agape. I’m sure this was unintentional, but that really almost makes it worse. When the couple (Raffi and Josh, both white) is sitting in her apartment listening to John Coltrane, he says to her “Is this that negro music I’ve been hearing so much about?” They laugh and laugh. Also, the character of Josh is supposedly “hip” because he goes to clubs full of white people that listen to hip-hop. He paints these portraits of sad black people behind fences! In the entire course of the film we don’t see him with one black friend! Is this supposed to be some sort of social commentary? Does he really feel as a NY white boy that the man is keeping African-Americans down? If he does, we never hear about it. The whole thing just seems like a trite effort on the part of bad writers to seem socially conscious. Nothing is more vomit inducing. Wait… I forgot about the romantic dialog in this film, that is more vomit inducing indeed. It’s sappy, overcooked, and literally had me gagging at one point. The whole film starts to feel like a quickly sinking ship. The more they try to pile on overdone ideas, and predictable twists, the faster they inevitably get sucked into the briny deep of bad movie. I just wish I had jumped off at some point and started swimming for shore.

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