Trance: when an art heist goes wrong the only auctioneer who knows where a valuable painting is can’t remember what he did with it. Purposely or not, this is a fragmented mess of a film: it’s hard to know exactly what is past, present, hypnosis, and visions – making it frustrating to follow at times. The twist-o-rama finale in particular is both super-smart and hyper-ridiculous. If it’s one thing though, Trance is visually sumptuous; some parts feel like a technical demo reel – full of impressive techniques, colouring, imagery, and most scenes have some form of reflection / symmetry. Yet, no matter how much Boyle tarts this up, it still manages to feel like a TV drama for the most part; lots of talking, small locations, tight cast etc. There’s also a really, really, strange ‘hairy bush’ Vs ‘shaved pubes’ sub-plot. Trance is part cutting-edge super-styalised directorial flare, and part humdrum, but the shattered timeline and ambiguity of what you’re watching make it very hard to tune in to. I imagine this plays better with a 2nd viewing.
Standard night out for us Scottish people…
Les Clefs De Bagnole: experimental film about making a film of a guy looking everywhere for his car keys. Even though almost nobody has heard of this feature, nearly every famous French actor you know shows up at some point. The ending’s revealed in the first two minutes, however the fast pace of their epic adventure mean you don’t really care. It brings up strange movie-related observations that viewers often miss: over-use of extras, continuity, presumptions, time lapses – even when the characters eat. It’s not an easy watch as they go from one crazy idea to the next, and the random segments of meta-film, interviews with the public, clay-mation, animation and sound effects don’t help. On the upside, this little gem looks great, has a witty script and is laden with gags – although they don’t all hit the mark. Most critics totally slated this, which is pretty harsh as it’s nowhere near as bad as they make out. The tagline on all promo material was “Don’t watch this, it’s crap” which shows how seriously it’s supposed to be taken. Experimental and undeniably French under-rated comedy that should keep you laughing, or at least smiling.