Review: Time Crimes


Despite the rather silly title, which I'm assuming sounds better in its native language than it does in English, 'Time Crimes' turned out to be a rather pleasant surprise with writer/director Nacho Vigalondo proving that it is not only possible to make a time travel movie which has no plot holes, but that you can do it on a shoe string budget.

The plot is beautifully crafted, simple enough to make this a film which you can simply enjoy, rather than waiting throughout for it all to come together, but clever enough to keep you engrossed. Simply put, husband 'Hector' stumbles across a killer in the woods, terrified he flees to an abandoned house, within the grounds he accidentally enters a time machine which  transports him an hour back in time. As with all time travel he alters one thing, trying to right another and finds himself stuck in a paradox which keeps getting deeper (and worse) with each correcting attempt.

The plot manages to perfectly find the compromise between depth and enjoyment, and  whilst true science fiction fans might criticise the movie for being too simple, or indeed failing to explain the physics of the time travel, in my opinion the decision to make the movie around the basis of time travel rather than about it, makes it all the more enjoyable. In my opening statement I made reference to the budget of the movie, however, do not expect a compromise. Despite the lack of coin, Vigalondo stylishly crafts every angle, wielding an excellently written script, clearly thought through set pieces and some excellent locations consistently throughout the movie, so that rather than seeing the budget as a limitation, it simply didn't need anything more.

The box art and several posters I have seen appear to push this movie as a sort of time stalking slasher, which I must insist to the point of hypocrisy seeing as this review is posted on a horror movie website, that it is not. Indeed the only reason I decided to review the movie, as the main bulk of it would clearly fall into the 'thriller' category,   is that throughout there are several scenes where one of the character's are stalked by a grotesque, disfigured killer leading to some 'chiller' style cat and mouse scenes which create some great tension and often end violently (albeit mild).

Overall, be a fan of horror, or sci-fi thrillers, this movie is definitely one to watch. As I have implied throughout this review, don't be expecting hours of debate from it as the movie is satisfyingly self contained but just sit back and enjoy what is a refreshingly stylish movie.

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