Early on during Transfer, I wondered whether director Damir Lukacevic realizes he’d made a sci-fi film about building a perfect race—in Germany. The film begins at Menzana Corporation, where the wealthy and elderly Herman (Hans-Michael Rehberg) and Anna (Ingrid Andree) are considering buying new bodies for their aging minds. Twenty seconds later, a Menzana executive tells a doubtful Herman that “blacks have an advantage.” (Mystery solved: Race, and racism, are major themes of the film.) But Herman and Anna want nothing more than to die together, and Anna only has a few months to live. So African refugees Apolain (B.J. Britt) and Sarah (Regine Nehy) sign away their bodies to Herman and Anna for 20 hours a day. Timidly at first, the couple learns to gulp down fresh air and run with reckless abandon in their new bodies. The film doesn’t dwell on the hedonistic: At night, Apolain and Sarah struggle to find meaning in their short, captive time together; during the day, Herman and Anna confront racial biases. Every element of the movie is seamlessly laced, each detail crafted perfectly. And it’s utterly suspenseful without spilling a drop. Since I can only hope there won’t be another horrible remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers for a while, consider Transfer part of your new required sci-fi viewing.
At 9 p.m.; also on Sunday, April 10 at 7 p.m. Both showings at Regal Cinemas Gallery Place.