The biggest thing this movie lacked was any sprinkle of originality.
MINOR PREMISE (2020)
Being the directorial feature debut for Eric Schultz, I was rather eager to see a newcomer bring something different to the table. Essentially, it was pretty alright, but surely didn’t woo me.
The biggest thing this movie lacked was any sprinkle of originality. This concept has been played out time and time again, and has been done well with movies like Primer. Minor Premise sets out to do nothing different with it and just plays by the sci-fi handbook, taking no risks. The trailer intrigued me at first because it looked like it was going to do something clever, but sadly it doesn’t and I was left feeling disengaged. I would have preferred to see a lower concept film with a sprinkle or two of personality, but what we have here is a lifeless film trying to punch above its weight class.
Fittingly, the premise is quite… minor. (I’ll see myself out).
A neuroscientist named Ethan is trying to finish his father’s legacy experiment and ends up splitting his mind into several fragments that switch off every six minutes. With the help of his ex-girlfriend and colleague Alli, he has to figure out how to trick his own split minds to get him back to normal. That’s the best I can explain the plot. It’s not very deep and it’s not very nuanced in any way. It’s a tired sci-fi storyline with the only emotional sub-plot being the death of Ethan’s father, that doesn’t even resolve in a very satisfying way.
ACTING | CHARACTERS | DIALOGUE:
The strongest aspect of this was Sathya Sridharan’s impeccable performance. As much as I wasn’t a fan of the overall story, I think he absolutely nailed the material and added his own element of thrill to the character. I can imagine seeing him in more things like this in the future.
VISUAL EFFECTS | MAKEUP | DESIGN:
I like the color grading, and the tones throughout definitely fit the mood. I don’t really understand the mechanism of Ethan's project though. It just looks like an old salon chair they would use to set curlers. Also, the house absolutely does not match Ethan as a character. It looks like they just picked someone’s mom’s furnished house to shoot in and didn’t dress it at all to suit him. The production design clearly shows a lot of effort in areas like the basement, but there’s just too many design choices that draw attention to themselves and take me out of the story.
MUSIC | SCORE | SOUND DESIGN:
There were some excellent songs featured, my favorite being Maya Funk by Bolivard. What a jam. However, the score was so weird and it felt like I kept hearing the same track over and over whenever there was a moment of thinking happening. The rest of the score all together didn’t really pull any scenes together or feel cohesive.
I know for a fact there will be many viewers looking for something like this and enjoy it. By all means, if you’re really into films like this and you’re like “Tiffany, what do you know?” (which would be valid), then go for it! You can find Minor Premise to rent on Amazon Prime.
MINOR PREMISE is Now In Theaters & Available on VOD