The Carolina Asheville Cinema has chosen Nacho Vigalondo’s Timecrimes as the film that officially opens their mezzanine cinema lounge room, where films will be shown for a $2 admission. And it’s a good choice. Timecrimes—which had a brief theatrical run in early 2009, but didn’t play locally—is that rarest of rare things: an intelligent time-travel movie that actually holds together on closer examination. I’m not saying that time travel itself holds together, but this film—by its own logic—does, and it doesn’t cheat to do it.
Shot on a low budget by Spanish filmmaker Nacho Vigalondo, the film is about a man (Karra Elejalde) who goes into the woods where he sees a woman take off her top. He gets more than he bargained for, however, when a bandaged (à la The Invisible Man) madman attacks him with a pair of scissors. His flight from this maniac slasher leads him to a mysterious house and laboratory where a lab assistant (played by the director) convinces him to hide from the quickly approaching killer in a weird fluid-filled container. It’s at this point that the film really starts playing with the viewer’s mind—in the best possible way. To say more gives the enjoyable—and sometimes very creepy—nature of the game away. You might want to catch the movie in its raw form before Vigalondo’s in-the-works—and undoubtedly more elaborate—U.S. remake takes shape. Rated R for nudity and language.