Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mind over mind, mind over matters

Sexy and crazy, “Trance” is Danny Boyle’s latest offering, a gritty, head-spinning heist-romance mash-up that challenges its viewers’ preconceived notions. Accessible but audacious, “Trance” is like a twisted, murky reflection of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.”

The faculties of the mind are the playground of an accomplished hypnotherapist, Elizabeth (Rosario Dawson), who must help an injured art auctioneer, Simon (James Mc Avoy). He needs to remember the location of a missing Goya painting; Simon is genuinely suffering from partial amnesia, but is in cahoots with would-be art thieves, led by the violent Franck (Vincent Cassel). Elizabeth discovers the thugs behind Simon’s injuries, but works with them to find the much-coveted masterpiece.

The hypnosis concept is playfully explored, allowing for plenty of opportunities to create layers within layers. The story’s tangles and twists intertwine into a complex tapestry; “Trance’s” chronology is a lovely swirl that uncovers and answers strategically placed clues. Its main characters are likewise multi-faceted; Dawson, McAvoy and Cassel are superb as the uneasy cohorts. It takes the puzzle some time to unravel, but it ultimately rewards, and it rewards well.

“Trance” will be in Philippine cinemas starting May 1.

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