Synopsis: In Timecode Nicolas Ricchini stars as Diego, he is also a dancer and choreographer and has collaborated with other choreographers, including the Akram Kha Company for the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in London. Diego’s co-star Lali Ayguadé is also a dancer and choreographer, she has worked all over the world and was nominated for Exceptional dancer in the Critics Awards of London. The music for this award winning film was created by composer Iván Céster, the Cinematography by Pere Pueyo and co-produced by Daniel Villanueva and Arturo Méndiz.
Once upon a time-long, long ago-I worked as a downtown multi-level parking facility attendant in a booth. A very small booth. So tiny that there was barely enough room to sit down on a stool during the excruciatingly extended stretches of inactivity. It was soul-crushingly boring. Mind-numbing. Spirit-sapping. Were it not for the fact that I was able to write shorts stories and poetry and read magazines I may have turned stark raving mad. Or, some may say, even more mad. That’s a joke. As far as you know anyway.
This all leads me to the all together strange yet charming Spanish short film Timecode. The pair of parking garage security guards featured in Director Juanjo Giménez’s quirky production come up with an entirely enchanting way to pass the interminable and lonely time on the job in a manner that far exceeds the entertainment value of perusing the latest issue of Rolling Stone. Without giving away too much of the thrust of this 15-minute gem of a tale, suffice it to say that dual leads Nicolas Ricchini and Lali Ayguadé each give us a clear idea of the other talents each of them possess beyond acting. And it is most impressive to behold.
If I have a single “want” that was not addressed in the telling of this offbeat story, it is that we never gain any discernable understanding as to why this enigmatic couple of Diego and Luna never speak to nor confide in each other beyond their innocuous inquiries regarding how the shift went (a flat “Fine.” every time), salutations and farewells. Hey, I completely recognize that there is not a lot of opportunity for investigation of in-depth character exposition in a scant quarter of an hour. So noted, it would have been really interesting to learn more about these two at least superficially regular worker drones. What is their background? How is their time occupied away from work? What makes them tick? Not a complete dossier certainly. Just a little more fleshing out would have been satisfactory and duly appreciated here.
Still, this is a good movie. And that’s just not one guy’s opinion. “Timecode” is on the short list for Academy Award consideration and has already captured the coveted Palme d’Or as the Best Short at the Cannes Film Festival along with a host of other motion picture gala top honors.
In the end, “Timecode” is a revelatory tribute to the triumph of the human spirit. Even in those circumstances where it seems that any expression of animation or exhilaration has been forever quashed and buried beneath a man-made fist of concrete and steel.