A young businessman wakes up in a hotel room locked from the inside with the dead body of his lover next to him. He hires a prestigious lawyer, and over one night they work together to clarify what happened in a frenetic race against time.
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Gripping mystery thriller which takes great risks of verisimilitude about deceptive appearances. It abandons itself wholeheartedly to Hitchcockian (and as another reviewer correctly points out De Palma) narrative patinas. Occasionally too self-congratulatory as if it aims to compete with US films of the genre, it provides good characterizations, contains some memorable scenes (e.g. car accident) and has social bite.
With more twists and turns than an aerobics class, Contratiempo is an always engaging, sumptuous looking and well acted classical thriller. The score is full, lensing superb and the production design considered. Where the film falters a little is in the last major scene of lawyer interrogation where the repetition of alternatives becomes too much. However the strong finish leaves this easily overlooked. 3.5 stars
Now this is my ScandiNoir of the year, even though it's in snowy mountainous Spain but whatever. It lacks the emotional stringpulling that truly pushes a thriller from good to great, but the puzzle is damn satisfying, and the framing device is fantastic: the whole present action is set in a single room, the rest being a telling of past events, the twists & turns unfolding from narration,which may or not be reliable.
Competently crafted thriller that offers a plot and twists worthy of Hitchcock's highlights. It draws attention right from the start, and it's hard not to watch it in one take. But, beneath intrigues that it offers, lies a story in which characters are just plot devices. So, psychologically unconvincing characters are the price for its masterful exactness. Recommendable, although it's hard not to feel kind of cheated
unreliable narrators (once again!) to create a false sense of suspense and mystery. if you're watching it, look carefully for the details. don't watch the trailer, all you need to know is the film is mainly about a man talking with his lawyer, 2.8