Director Danny Boyle has been in rare form. Slumdog Millionaire
won him an Oscar, 127 Hours
was nominated for six more, and then he directed the opening ceremonies at last summer’s Olympics. So maybe he was just running on fumes, but Trance
is a big letdown. Not artistically so much—because there’s a lot here to study visually and aurally—but the story just goes around in circles until it stops rather suddenly. Art gallery employee Simon (James McAvoy) thwarts a thief (Vincent Cassel) from lifting a priceless masterpiece. The only problem is, after the thief knocks him senseless, Simon can’t remember where he hid it. Simon visits a sultry hypnotherapist (Rosario Dawson) to unlock his memory, but what’s in the mental vault is a lot trickier and messier than anyone realizes. Again, Trance
is something to see and hear, but watching it … that’s an entirely different story.