Watch The Tracey Fragments
- 1 hr 17 min
The Tracey Fragments is a 2007 Canadian drama film that tells the story of a 15-year-old girl named Tracey Berkowitz. The movie, directed by Bruce McDonald and based on the novel by Maureen Medved, features Elliot Page in the main role and Zie Souwand and Maxwell McCabe-Lokos in supporting roles. The movie is set in a suburban area of Winnipeg, Canada, and follows Tracey on her quest to search for her missing brother, Sonny, after he tells her that he is going to the convenience store and doesn't return. Tracey is a creative and sensitive girl who is struggling to come to terms with her parents' divorce and the fact that her father has left them. She copes with her feelings through self-harm and writing in her diary.
The movie is presented in a non-linear narrative style with multiple flashbacks and dream sequences that depict the fragmented nature of Tracey's mind. The movie is shot in black and white with intermittent flashes of red throughout, portraying the internal turmoil and confusion of Tracey's character.
Tracey's story unfolds in a series of vignettes that are narrated by her and shown through her fragmented memories. The majority of the movie takes place on a city bus, where Tracey is trapped after running away from home, wearing only a shower curtain. However, the different episodes are narrated in a non-chronological manner, showing Tracey's past experiences and memories, which ultimately give insight into her present state.
Throughout the movie, Tracey meets a variety of characters, including a teenage boy who tries to take advantage of her vulnerability, a couple arguing about a cheating husband, and a compassionate counselor played by McCabe-Lokos. The interactions with each of the characters on the bus reflect not only Tracey's experience but allow the viewer to get insight into different perspectives.
The Tracey Fragments is a coming of age story that deals with themes such as mental illness, trauma, and self-discovery. As the movie progresses, it becomes clear that Tracey's search for Sonny is a metaphor for her quest to find herself, with the realization that her search for Sonny is similar to her attempt to reconnect with a sense of family and break free from the disorienting world of adolescence.
Elliot Page delivers an emotionally charged performance that captures the essence of Tracey's character, portraying the turmoil and confusion of her mind, while also capturing the difficulties of interacting with the world around her. In turn, the supporting cast does an excellent supporting job of creating an environment that shows Tracey's struggle.
The Tracey Fragments received mixed reviews when it premiered at the 2007 Berlin International Film Festival. Many praised the movie for its unique presentation style, but others felt that it was overly self-indulgent and difficult to follow. Regardless, it remains an iconic showcase of what independent art-house cinema can achieve with creativity and imagination. The movie takes a unique perspective and presents a story of mental health and perseverance in the face of an ultimately devastating truth.