Synopsis: A fine art auctioneer mixed up with a gang joins forces with a hypnotherapist to recover a lost painting. As boundaries between desire, reality and hypnotic suggestion begin to blur the stakes rise faster than anyone could have anticipated.
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Director(s): Danny Boyle
Production: 20th Century Fox
  3 wins & 3 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
101 min


19 million, it's against you, sir.

20 million pounds.

20. Here's the bid

at 20 million.

21 million.

Back in the aisle.

There is a painting,

it's by Rembrandt.

'Storm On The Sea Of Galilee',

it's called...

...and he's in it.

Old Rembrandt,

he's in the painting.

He's in there, right in

the middle of the storm,

looking straight out at you. can't see him.

And the reason

you can't see him

is because

the painting has been stolen.

Lots of paintings have been stolen.

They're still missing.

'Pride Of Lions' showing here on my left.

Thank you.

I start the bidding here

at a thousand guineas.

It used to be anyone

could steal a painting.

There was no need for a gun.

AM it took was a bit of

muscle and some nerve.

And that...

...was that.

But not anymore.

Those days are gone.

A business can't function

taking big hits

like that.

So now we have procedures...

...and precautions

and security measures.

Now we have a policy.

We have bag searches and magnetic

alarms and silent scanners...

...and X-ray machines

and cameras.

Also we have drills. And the

first thing they tell us is...

Do not be a hero.

This is a robbery!

Now no piece of art

is worth a human life.

It's a sound

piece of advice, that.

No piece of art is

worth a human life.

But... the event of an event...

...or situation we are to remove

the most valuable item...

...or items and take them

to a place of safety.

I.E., the fast-drop slot... a time delay vault.

That's about all

you can do really.

Come and enjoy the auction.

I mean, if you wanna let people

in, if you want them to bid...

And when you're

trying to og the star

of the show for

25 million sterling... definitely

want them to bid.


Sold to paddle 88.

Congratulations, madam.

Ladies and gentlemen...

...there will now

be a brief interval.

When we reconvene, our head

auctioneer, Francis Lemaitre...

...will lead the auction for

Goya's 'Witches In The Air'.

Thank you very much.

So we notify the cops

about big ticket sales...

...and we even keep half a dozen

Ukrainian ex-naval commandos... a van outside, just in case

it all kicks off. Or so they say.

Simon, are you coming?

I'm about to start.



Here we go.

So, what happens,

of course, is that

just as we up our game,

the villains up theirs.

They don't just

turn up on spec anymore.

We have precautions,

they have plans.

They do research,

they do recces.

They learn about our

cameras and scanners...

...and Ukrainian ex-naval commandos

but some things don't change.

It still takes muscle

and it still takes nerve.

Good afternoon, ladies and

gentlemen, and welcome to Delancy's.

We are extremely

honored to be selling

Francisco de Goya's

wonderful work...

...of 'Witches In The Air'.

Goya, the father

of modern art...

...and the first great painter

of the human mind.

Let's start the bidding

at 5 million pounds.

Thank you, sir. 5 million pounds.

An opening bid.

5 million, 500 thousand.

6 million.

In the center here

at 10 million pounds.

11 million on the aisle.

12 million. 13 million.

17 million. Thank you, sir.

18 million.

19 million. Bad luck. 20?

21 million pounds.

Take your time.

22 million. Thank you.

Telephone bidder now. 26 million.

26 on the telephone.

27 to the lady on the aisle.

Small one?

Small one.

27 million,

500 thousand I'll take.

Last chance.

Hammer's coming down.

I'm selling for 27 million,

500 thousand pounds.

Sold. Paddle number 104.

Get down! Get down!

Gas. Gas!

Everybody out now!

Everybody get out the building now!

Come on!

Gas attack.

Gas attack, gas attack.

Attention please.

Attention please.

Please evacuate the building.

Please do not

use the elevators.

Make your way to the

nearest emergency exit.

So when it happens,

as one day it must... is imperative

not to panic.

Follow the drill and let

the training kick in.

If circumstances allow...

...if, remember only if... the event of an event...

...or situation...

...we are to remove,

where possible,

the most valuable

item or items...

...and take them to

a place of safety.

Stop right there.

Step back.

Remember, do not be a hero.

Put it down.

No piece of art is

worth a human life.

No, no, no...


F***ing idiot!

Riz, let's go.

Afternoon, Sister.

And how are you feeling?

Um... Fine.

Been up?



Yeah. Walking and everything.

You know who you are?

Yeah, I think so.

How do you feel

about going home?

Jolly good! Right,

come on, troops, let's go.


Oh, f*** off!

F***'s sake.


Hey, Simon.

Franck wants to see you.

Where is it?

I don't know.

I'm sorry, Franck.

You must have taken it. You

must have put it somewhere.

Yeah, I must have.

I know I...

Well, did you

or did you not?

I can't remember!

I got hit on the head!

That you remember?

Yeah, I got a big f***ing scar on

my head to remind me, don't I?

What did you expect?

You assaulted me. I had a shotgun.

Simon, the plan was simple.

All you needed to do was take the

painting and bring it to me.

I know, I...

So, where is it?

I don't know, I can't remember.

I can't remember.

I'm sorry,

I can't remember.


Amnesia's bollocks. Everyone

knows amnesia is bollocks.

No, it's not.

It's not

going to work.

- What do you mean?

- He cannot remember.

Rate this script:5.0 / 2 votes

Joe Ahearne

Joe Ahearne is a British television writer and director, best known for his work on several fantasy and science fiction based programmes including Ultraviolet, Apparitions and Doctor Who. He also wrote the screenplay for 2013 feature film Trance. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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