Hours of Light

Director: Manolo Matji

Spain| 2004. English subtitles. Colour. Dolby digital stereo. 98 min.

Based on real events, this dramatically pared-down prison redemption drama stars the baby-faced Alberto San Juan as Garfia, a multiple killer who is sentenced to 100 years in a high security prison. Subjected to the harshest treatment, Garfia becomes a rabble-rouser and the bane of the prison governor. Shocked by the inhuman conditions in the prison, doctor and single mother Marimar (Emma Suarez) begins a relationship with Garfia and starts a campaign to improve prison conditions. The routines of prison life and its occasional explosions of violence are superbly evoked. The film has more of a struggle to make credible the romance between the good doctor and the prisoner, though one can’t fault the performances of San Juan and Suarez.

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