Thursday, 2 May 2013

Movie Review - Trance

I suppose the nudity would be a draw for some, haha.
   Cerebral movies involve manipulation of time, unreliable narrators, tricks of special effects and such. While one might expect Trance to have visual dreamwalks into the psyche, it is mostly grounded in cold reality but strung together masterfully to make a suspenseful and complex caper.

   A case of amnesia causes a valuable painting to go missing during a botched heist. A hypnotist is used by the criminals to try and uncover its whereabouts, not knowing that there layers and layers of mind games being played.

   Trance is deftly plotted, with twists and turns in the story that are not easily deciphered. There are only three main characters but their intentions and roles are switched around and mixed up to keep one guessing. One of the crooks is right; the idea of hypnosis uncovering the missing memory SHOULD be a simple matter but the unexpected complications makes for a brilliantly engrossing movie.

   The special effects are few, only one part really stands out to make you lose your head. The gore might seem out of place with the rest of the more mundane effects. The nudity, the perfection, is distracting but since the movie deals with fine art and features naked painted ladies, it should be fine. They're not being equal opportunity about it though, even if chances were given, haha.

   James McAvoy still maintains his charming innocence though this idealism is broken near the beginning. His character transformation is convincing and effective, bravo. Rosario Dawson is initially calm and composed, as her hypnotist role dictates, the she goes through a gamut of emotions as she goes through different stages in the affair. Cassel is largely a thug but does get to display other facets to his character.

   The film is carried by the strength of McAvoy and Dawson's performance. The plot is quite clever and smart but it wouldn't have been pulled off as good as it could be without the leads' virtuoso talents. The desperation, the regrets, the rage, fear and surprises power through the scenes and lets the time fly by as the caper unfolds.

   Trance is hypnotic. The actors and story will hold you under its spell. If your sensibilities can handle the nudity, then watch it!
   
   SPOILERS!!! Don't look if you haven't seen the movie or perhaps you have seen it and got amnesia.
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   The talking bloody head stump was the special effect that was too much. It went a little too campy there.

   So the hypnotist wanted a painting right from the start. She just didn't know how it would be done, that it would involve that much murder.  It was frightening that she was correct and McAvoy WOULD have killed her, as he killed the lady driver.

   Nice to see McAvoy play a villain, even though he didn't look like he was one on the beginning.

   The hypnotist really liked or loved Franck the thug? That was kinda nice. I thought he was going to die so it's a good thing she saved him.

   Why give him three bullets? He might have shot Franck with one of them.

   Yikes, the 'perfection' was not expected. Yikes! 

  I thought the Strawberry gambit would be used somehow.  Or she had hypnotized the other guys without them knowing.

2 comments:

  1. A lot of fun, especially if you enjoy people messing around with one another. Good review Benedict.

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  2. Thanks! It was a great film. Glad you enjoyed it like I did :)

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