The Twists and Turns of Timecrimes

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A horror, comedy, and tragedy film in three acts, Nacho Vigalondo’s Timecrimes mixes the follies of Ancient Greek plays with the wonder (and dangers) of classic sci-fi pulp. After being attacked by an unknown assailant, Hector (Karra Elejalde) unknowingly flees into a time-machine. He’s flung back to the start of the day, but he’s not alone—there already exists a Hector in this timeline. In a series of mad scrambles, he sets out to stop himself. The ingenuity of the script and subsequently the camerawork stems from Vigalondo’s recontextualization of perspective. Once the first act ends (or “time-loop”), the story has essentially shown its beginning, middle, and end. What remains to be seen are the unseen forces propelling the narrative forward; new characters and plot twists that exist for more than just the sake of surprise but rather instead serve to add a richness to the story. Scenes are repeated but Vigalondo shuns complete familiarity not only on the level of narrative but aesthetically as well. Reworked camerashots and angles reframe both how the story is understood and how they should be perceived. A long-form Kuleshov experiment where a stabbing can produce a wince at one turn and laughter the next.

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