Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Ramblings about 'Trance'

So where to start with Trance? It's certainly a strange one. The premise (which I won't spoil here), is certainly unique and the twist on subverting audience expectations should also be applauded. The cast are all strong, music is good and used creatively and the overall technical craft on display is excellent. So why then doesn't it entirely succeed?

The weak point is the third act which presents a resolution that just feels unfulfilling. It's hard to go into without spoiling but the crux of it lies in script genre and audience expectation.

We like stories about 'a guy who'. Someone we can follow and see through the eyes of. This is the first problem we encounter when the events of act 3 unfold. The second issue is that the film tries to merge script genres. It's part fleece and part whydunnit? Both these genres have clear and very different signifiers and when they blur here it leaves a weak story resolution.

Trance is still a decent film and well worth seeing. It's also hard to see how it could be fixed as it is not a lazy decision or poor craft which has caused the problem. Danny Boyle has tried something new here and the problem may well just be what we are programmed on a sub-conscious level to expect from our stories.

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