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Originally published September 23, 2005 at 12:00 AM | Page modified September 26, 2005 at 12:03 PM

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Movie review

"El Crimen Perfecto": Special of day is comeuppance

This crisp, sometimes wickedly funny horror-comedy with a title that makes one look twice (yes, it does translate to "The Ferfect Crime," that...

This crisp, sometimes wickedly funny horror-comedy is an astute satire on the boundlessness of unchecked sexual fetishism and power.

Guillermo Toledo is brilliant as Rafael, the overheated manager of ladies wear in a Madrid department store. Sickened by the reality of his middle-class existence, Rafael overcompensates with a veneer of expensive refinement, animal charisma and such supreme sexual confidence he routinely holds after-hour trysts at the store with women, freeloading such pricey consumer goods as cooked lobster and silk sheets.

Movie review 3.5 stars

Showtimes and trailer

"El Crimen Perpecto," with Mónica Cervera and Guillermo Toledo. Directed by Álex de la Iglesia, from a screenplay by Iglesia and Jorge Guerricaechevarría. Not rated; nudity, sexual situations and shocking violence. 105 minutes. In Spanish with English subtitles. Harvard Exit.

Rafael meets his match in Lourdes (Mónica Cervera), a mousy saleswoman who helps him cover up a crime, then blackmails him into timid submission to her own lusts and fantasies of domestic bliss.

While owing nothing, stylistically speaking, to the subversiveness of Alfred Hitchcock's or Luis Buñuel's psychological dramas of predatory passions, director Álex de la Iglesia ("800 Bullets") mines the same territory of obsession and survival to a satisfyingly enigmatic end.

— Tom Keogh, Special to The Seattle Times

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