The Films of 2020: Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City (dir by Daniel Calparsoro)

Twin Murders: The Silence Of The White City is a Spanish film about two people who spend a lot of time jogging.

Alba (Belen Rueda) and Unai (Javier Rey) both like to run through the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz.  Eventually, they run into each other and soon, they’re running through the city together on an almost nightly basis.  Along the way, they fall in love.  Of course, there are complications.  Alba is married.  Unai is traumatized by something that happened in the past and he’s only now starting to come out of his shell.  Can these two find happiness?

Making things even more complicated, Alba also happens to be Unai’s new boss!  Alba is the deputy chief of the Basque Country’s police force.  Unai is a legendary detective and criminal profiler who has been on a leave of absence ever since the death of his wife.  Can Unai conquer his fears and his pain?  Can Alba prove that she’s capable of handling a job that typically goes only to men?  And, again — can they do all this while falling in love?

And there’s a serial killer to deal with, as well!

Actually, to be honest, the film is more about the serial killer than the love story between Alba and Unai.  It’s just that, when I watched the movie, I always found myself far more interested in the scenes of Alba and Unai running than in the scenes of Unai trying to discover the identity of the killer.  (In fact, the identity of the killer is revealed about 40 minutes into this 110-minute film, which means that the audience spends the majority of the film with a lot more information than either Unai or Alba.)  The running scenes are beautifully filmed and they’re well-played by Rueda and Rey.

Unfortunately, the serial killer stuff just isn’t that interesting.  This is another killer who has a precise way of picking his victims and who goes out of his way to pose the dead bodies in the most ornate and haunting way possible.  It leads to some effective visuals but it’s still not anything that we haven’t experienced in other movies.  I always find it interesting that cinematic serial killers always have such complicated motives whereas real-life serial killers almost inevitably turn out to be some nerdy guy who never got over still being a virgin on his 20th birthday.  Real-life serial killers are almost always sub-literate losers whereas cinematic serial killers are always very articulate and clever.  Call it the Hannibal Lecter effect, I guess.

Speaking of Hannibal Lecter, Twin Murders has its very own Hannibal.  His name is Tasio (Alex Brendemühl) and he’s a former TV crime show host who decided to become a real criminal.  The current murders look a lot like his former murders but Tasio’s still in prison so what gives?  Is Tasio involved in the new murders or is the new murderer just a copycat?  Watch and find out, I guess.

Twin Murders: The Silence of The White City is all about style.  The plot itself is full of red herrings and bizarre motivations and, at times, it’s nearly impossible to follow.  However, the film looks great and is full of ominous atmosphere.  The cast does a good enough job to make their clichéd characters somewhat engaging.  It’s definitely an imperfect film and certainly not one to watch if you’re looking for a realistic portrait of cops or serial killers.  But if you’re just looking for a film with style to burn, Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City can take care of you.

One response to “The Films of 2020: Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City (dir by Daniel Calparsoro)

  1. Pingback: Lisa’s Week In Review: 9/28/20 — 10/4/20 | Through the Shattered Lens

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