Fox Searchlight may have over-promised a bit on the promotional websites for Danny Boyle’s upcoming thriller Trance, starring Vincent Cassel and James McAvoy as partners in a high-end art theft gone wrong, and Rosario Dawson as the hypnotist they consult to recover McAvoy’s lost memories about what happened to the missing loot. The press release promises “a mirrored parallax” that lets viewers “dive into a world where reality blurs into the subconscious,” and asks them to “completely immerse yourself into the journey that is TRANCE, by visiting these experiential and hypnotizing companion sites to reveal hidden memories from the film.”
The two “mirrored parallax” sites, DoYouWantToRemember.com and DoYouWantToForget.com, are in fact hypnotizing, as they rapidly flash images and near-subliminal words, which users can click on to see extremely brief, tease-y clips from the film. It’s all better experienced late at night in a darkened room than by daylight in an office cubicle or dorm room, but it does get across Trance’s consciously surreal tone, and Boyle’s usual stylized directorial flash in general. (See also: Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting, 127 Hours, etc.) Still, the real meat is in the film’s main site, which both “mirrored parallax” sites ultimately lead to. There, Boyle discusses the film’s plot, themes, and ideas in some depth, in an intelligent making-of featurette packed with pop-up sidebars. Warning, though: It’s extremely spoilery, and DoYouWantToForget.com won’t actually erase anyone’s memories of the key film moments that get revealed. For those who want to go in without any knowledge of Trance’s major twists, Boyle’s Reddit AMA on Friday, March 15 at 1 p.m. EST might be a safer bet.