Anwar Rasheed's highly anticipated film Trance released outside Kerala recently. The film, which is a scathing take on scams perpetrated in the name of religion, has opened to mixed reviews. The second half of the film, which is psychedelic and open to interpretation, has especially left the audience hanging.
Trance tells the story of an atheist, Viju Prasad (a brilliant Fahadh), who works as a motivational speaker. However, Viju himself is struggling and when he gets the opportunity to become a 'miracle worker', he decides to take the plunge. We're taken through his journey as he becomes Joshua Carlton, a pastor who draws humongous crowds, but ends up having a mental health crisis.
There are several players in the drama that unfolds - Solomon (Gautham Menon), Isaac (Chemban Vinod), Avarachan (Dileesh Pothan), Esther Lopez (Nazriya), Mathews (Soubin) and so on. However, there's more to these characters than what meets the eye. The writer of the film, Vincent Vadakkan, appears to have deliberately drawn parallels with stories from the Bible and Christian legends to establish Viju's downfall and subsequent redemption.
Esther Lopez, for instance, seems to have been inspired by Mary Magdalene whose real identity has been the subject of debate for years. According to popular belief, Mary was a 'prostitute' and Jesus rids her of seven evil spirits. She follows him closely and is said to have witnessed his crucifixion and resurrection. Esther's story arc in Trance is very similar to this.
The following video is on the Biblical characters in Trance and how they can be interpreted.