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Timecrimes (free)

  • Union South Marquee 1308 West Dayton Street Madison, WI, 53715 United States (map)
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Leading up to the Wisconsin Film Festival's 20th anniversary in April, coordinators have been revisiting many of their past favorites in the form of a monthly "Tuesday Night Movie Clubs" at the Marquee in the campus hub of Union South. Last December, programmer Mike King introduced the deliriously enjoyable documentary excursion, The Cruise, which screened at the very first fest in 1999. The series' first 2018 selection is the 2008 moody sci-fi feature debut, Timecrimes, from Spanish director Nacho Vigalondo (whose most recent feature, Colossal, made Capital Times critic Rob Thomas' top 10 of 2017). Vigalondo brings the same unique genre synthesis and invigorating panache to the age-old concept of time travel here that he brought to his riff on the monster movie (Yongary) in Colossal. Timecrimes opens with stark voyeuristic curiosity in the Cantabria countryside, as middle-aged Héctor (Karra Elejalde) spies on a woman (Barbara Goenaga) undressing in the forest behind his house. This leads him to investigate, but he's lured into a dizzying and disturbing sequence of events involving an assaulting Darkman-like figure cloaked in bandages. As Héctor flees for his safety, he stumbles upon a research lab owned by a prognosticating scientist (Vigalondo himself), who convinces him to take refuge in a strange mechanical contraption. Once Héctor emerges and realizes the space-time continuum has been altered by approximately one hour, he obstinately re-enters the world where another version of himself already exists. While similarities to Shane Carruth's low-budget Primer (2004) and Rian Johnson's Looper (2012) abound in this serpentine thriller on human identity, Timecrimes is also distinguished by its boldly dark humor. (Warning: trailer contains potential spoilers.) —Grant Phipps

Earlier Event: January 16
Cap Times Talks: Kathy Cramer (free)
Later Event: January 18
FRZN Fest 2018 (multiple venues)