The first 20 minutes of Trance, a rapid-fire art heist, turns the caper genre on its ear when we learn that the larceny isn’t what we are led to believe. Enter Dawson, as a hypnotherapist probing the minds of the would-be pilferers to find out what went wrong, and the story is off and running at a breakneck pace (and more than a few necks are broken). Be forewarned: If you run out to the lobby to grab some more popcorn or soda, you’ll need a companion to bring you up to speed. Miss a little of Trance and you miss a lot.
Prior to production, a number of A-list actors had been previously attached to Trance, including Michael Fassbender, Colin Firth and Scarlett Johansson. Ultimately, director Danny Boyle settled with Dawson, Vincent Cassel and James McAvoy. A little bit of McAvoy usually goes a long way for me (The Last Station, Atonement) but here he does rather nicely as an unwilling accomplice (or is he?). And have I mentioned Ms. Dawson? She’s… well, she’s Rosario Dawson.
The other film opening this weekend is The Place Beyond the Pines, a movie Boise Weekly first screened in September 2012 at the Toronto International Film Festival. It’s a rich man/poor man story starring Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper. Despite its star power, it’s really only half of a decent film. Stay for the poor man, leave for the rich man. The good news is that the poor man’s story comes first. The bad news is that you’ll be charged full price for the entire film.