Monday, 12 August 2013


Another film that was underrated by the critics, causing me to miss seeing it at the cinema, which I deeply regret because among the film’s many outstanding qualities is the gorgeous cinematography. Danny Boyle’s latest film also features one of the most effective scores I have heard in a while and great performances by the three lead actors (James McAvoy, Rosario Dawson and Vincent Cassel). 

Trance also happens to be my kind of film. McAvoy plays Simon, a man utterly confused about what’s going on around him while associating with a femme-fatale-like character (Elizabeth, played by Dawson) and a classy gangster (Franck, played by Cassel) and his thugs. Yes, this is a stylish neo-noir film. And it is all done so well that the fact that I was almost as confused as Simon could actually be seen by me as another positive attribute. 

If I told you what Trance is about, it would only mislead you (unless I tried to tell you everything, which I couldn’t do even if I wanted to, which I don’t). Suffice to say that it concerns the whereabouts of a stolen painting worth £27.5 million. Due to a head injury, Simon can’t remember where he put it and so requires the help of a hypnotherapist (Elizabeth), with Franck lurking in the background every step of the way. Things go downhill from there and the plot gets so complicated that the above description may actually NOT be what the film is about (I tried to warn you).

The violence in Trance is far too graphic for my taste and seemed quite unnecessary. And the ending doesn’t completely work for me, though it wasn’t a major letdown. All in all, I enjoyed Trance much more than, say, Elysium, which I did see in the cinema (on IMAX, no less), but then mind-bending intelligent well-made neo-noir films just happen to be a particular interest (though sci-fi would also qualify). ***+. My mug is up.

1 comment:

  1. Hard to argue with the film's style and overall intelligence, but I'd also have to agree with the critics who say the director was trying too hard to be clever and twisty. In the end, the twists should leave you thinking, "Ah, that makes sense now." The storyline revealed in the final car ride has distinctly less intelligence than the rest of the movie to that point. Still a fun evening's entertainment and I'll give it ***