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In many respects, Trance is everything you might expect from Danny Boyle. It incorporates all elements of style and presentation that we have now come to expect from the British filmmaker, including fast edits, a glossy look, simple actions made exciting, and an overall visceral experience that keeps you continually on edge, sometimes uncomfortably so. One of the problems when discussing Trance is the issue of giving too much away. The story is really a series of reveals where pieces of the puzzle come to the light one step at a time. Trance is not an easy film to like. Being challenged is fine; in fact, it’s actually fun, but director Boyle decorates the film with such flashy moments of extreme violence that come at you like kicks to the stomach that what began as an intriguing look into the mindset of a working criminal ends up being an altogether unpleasant experience, not to mention that once you’re in a position to see the whole picture what was presented as complicated is really quite simple. It’s like having the rug pulled from under your feet. You actually feel cheated. Available in both DVD and Blu-Ray formats.
We’re told that the film is loosely inspired by true events. Starbuck is a French/Canadian comedy about a man who over a period of two years made several ‘donations’ to a Quebec sperm bank when he needed money. One day, a lawyer from the bank tells the man that because of the several visits he had previously made he has now fathered 533 children. 142 of them have joined together to file a class action lawsuit in order to have the clinic reveal the identity of the donor. All they know of the donor is that he signed the papers as Starbuck. Starbuck is a very funny comedy that because of its subject borders on smuttiness yet never quite sinks that low. Despite the occasional moment of drama – one of the teenagers he has fathered overdoses – the film has a continual genial approach that ultimately wins you over and has you leaving the theatre feeling surprisingly charmed. Even the overdose subplot has a happy ending. Available on DVD and Blu-Ray.