That’s a funny way to sell a movie
I think you know how I feel about remakes by now. In most cases they’re completely unnecessary. The argument “but Americans don’t want to read subtitles” just isn’t good enough to me. I’ve already made my view known on this and I wouldn’t mention it again if it wasn’t for a cover of that I recently got in my hands that boggled my mind.
The movie in question was Timecrimes, a Spanish science fiction movie.
This is a fun time-paradox story about a Hector, an ordinary man, who accidentally ends up in a time travel machine which sends him back to just about an hour earlier.
As we all know messing with time is a tricky thing. You can easily end up with consequences you didn’t think of and putting things right again can be harder than you think.
If you’re into that kind of stories, like I am, Timecrimes is an enjoyable little gem of a movie. As opposed to the case of Primer, I could pretty much follow all twists and loops it makes. Almost at least. If I lost something, it wasn’t crucial to my enjoyment.
Of course it’s got the distinct feeling of being low-budget, a style that reminded me of a short film rather than a full length feature movie. There is a time machine of course, but the design is simple. There are no spectacular special effects to speak of andI didn’t think about the cinematography or music, so I suppose it wasn’t anything extraordinary and as of the acting… Well, let’s say it’s not intended to build deep psychological portrays. But that’s not the point. Time travel stories aren’t generally about showing drama and insight to the depths of mankind. It’s about exercising your brain and having some fun.
I realize that it probably isn’t altogether easy to write cover texts for films. Especially in this case, there wasn’t much space the cover designer had to work with. The text on the backside was in four different languages, so the length of the “elevator pitch” was down to just slightly above the limitations for a tweet.
You would think that the copyrighter who had gotten the task to say something about this film would make an effort to write something really catchy, something that would be the tipping point and win the potential viewer over, making the decision to pick up this movie and not the one from the competitor.
What do you think they came up with? Considering the beginning of this post you might have an idea. Yep.
“Dreamworks will make an American remake in 2012”.
You could read this in two ways. The first one is:
“We all know that European films suck and we don’t expect you to consider watching a Spanish one, but this one has Hollywood approval, so give it a chance”.
The second one is:
“This will be made in a full-fledged Hollwood version as soon as this year, so you could as well wait for it”.
Either way it’s pretty stupid.
Timecrimes isn’t stupid though. I recommend it to anyone who shares my view that the time-paradox episodes of Star Trek are the best ones (next to the Borg, of course).
Timecrimes (Los cronocrímenes, Nacho Vigalondo, ES, 2008) My rating: 4/5