HollywoodChicago.com RSS   Facebook   HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter   Free Giveaway E-mail   

Film Review: Danny Boyle Nearly Mesmerizes with ‘Trance’

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
No votes yet

CHICAGO – Danny Boyle’s “Trance” is an undeniably well-made thriller that works back in on itself a few too many times for disbelief to stay suspended but delivers enough escapist entertainment to be considered a success. It’s totally ridiculous and yet never boring, propelled by the quick-cut style of the man who brought similar momentum to “Shallow Grave,” “Trainspotting,” and “28 Days Later.” At this point in his career, nearly everything Boyle does is interesting. The fact that “Trance” doesn’t rise above that faint praise is only due to the silliness of the script by Joe Ahearne & John Hodge. When one reconsiders the plot after the end, it’s nearly miraculous that Boyle and his talented cast pull it off as expertly as they do.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

“Trance” is an art heist movie for adrenalin junkies. Simon (James McAvoy) works at a well-known art auction house. He has been well-trained as to what to do should anyone try to rob the building of their multi-million dollar collection of paintings. Move quickly and save the most valuable piece of art that you can get your hands on. Put it in a special case, put that case down a chute, and at least guarantee that the prized possession of the auction house will be safe.

StarRead Brian Tallerico’s full review of “Trance” in our reviews section.

When Franck (Vincent Cassel) and his team moves to take over the art house at which Simon works, our man moves into action. He takes the painting, zips it up, and moves to the chute, at which point he is knocked unconscious by Franck. The thief and his men get the case back to their lair, only to discover that Simon pulled a fast one and cut out the painting before getting brained. And guess what? Simon got hit in the head hard enough that he has no idea where it is. Enter Elizabeth (Rosario Dawson), a therapist/hypnotist who may be able to help Simon recover his memories before Franck kills him. And she may have some ulterior motives of her own.

If you’re thinking that hypnotic suggestion, surreal flashbacks, twisting narratives, and Hitchcockian degrees of betrayal sounds right about in the wheelhouse of a director who has played with in-your-face visuals and bad behavior before, then you’re on the right wavelength for “Trance.” It’s an aggressive movie, a work propelled by a driving score by Rick Smith of Underworld (who Boyle used so memorably in “Trainspotting”) and kinetically shot by the great Anthony Dod Mantle (a regular Boyle collaborator). It’s a film that has such Boyle-typical forward momentum that the viewer simply gives into it and goes along for the ride.

StarContinue reading for Brian Tallerico’s full “Trance” review.

“Trance” stars James McAvoy, Rosario Dawson, and Vincent Cassel. It was directed by Danny Boyle. It opens in Chicago on April 12, 2013.

Photo credit: Fox Searchlight

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.

User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing


  • Speech & Debate (stage play)

    CHICAGO – “Speech & Debate,” the latest production from the mighty Brown Paper Box Company, continues their tradition of thinking outside that “box” in presenting storefront theater that makes a statement and a difference. “Speech” goes inside America by showcasing the outsiders… those who create art because they can’t get it right in real life. This non-equity Chicago stage play premiere is finely tuned and wonderfully acted, and runs through March 4th, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • We're Gonna Be Okay

    CHICAGO – The 1960s were a time of historical social transition. The movements – civil rights, feminist, gay rights – all had roots in that tumultuous decade. The Chicago premiere of Basil Kreimendahl’s “We’re Gonna Be Okay” echoes all of those movements in its characters, and collides them against the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the American Theater Company through March 4th, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.


HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter


HollywoodChicago.com Top Ten Discussions