THE INVISIBLE GUEST
CONTRATIEMPO
2016, Film Factory, 106 min, Spain, Dir: Oriol Paulo

At the center of a locked-room mystery is Adrián Doria (Mario Casas), a successful businessman who has been discovered in a hotel suite with the body of his lover. Charged with murder, he enlists top-notch witness preparation expert Virginia Goodman (Ana Wagener). As the clock ticks down to the start of Doria’s trial, Goodman’s relentless questioning of her client’s defense brings to light some troubling inconsistencies. With strong performances and plenty of plot twists, this superbly crafted thriller delivers on the promise of Paulo’s earlier THE BODY.


ISMAEL
2013, 106 min, Spain, Dir: Marcelo Piñeyro

With a return address on an envelope his only guide, 8-year-old Ismael (Larsson do Amaral) runs away to Barcelona in search of his estranged father (Mario Casas) but finds instead a grandmother (Belén Rueda) who hadn’t known of Ismael’s existence. As in his earlier KAMCHATKA, Piñeyro displays a sure hand with young actors and serious subjects, and this tale of family reconciliation is both touching and frequently funny. In Spanish with English subtitles.


THE MACHINIST
2004, Paramount, 101 min, Spain/USA, Dir: Brad Anderson

This haunting portrait of a man on the edge of sanity stars Christian Bale as Trevor Reznik, an industrial worker plagued by insomnia and hallucinations. Fired after his erratic behavior causes an accident at work, Reznik’s sole source of comfort is prostitute Stevie (Jennifer Jason Leigh), but soon even she becomes suspect in his eyes as the machinist grows increasingly paranoid. Bale went on a crash diet to play the emaciated title character, losing more than 60 pounds.


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