“Strange and compelling, Trapped is a story of high-school heartbreaks and dark secrets and unbreakable ties.”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
A band of schoolchildren that uses a bus for its rhythm section, two children Arjun and Anandita and their sibling Amit whom no one can see. Kavitha Mandanna’s Trapped is the story of a ghost stuck in a world where his parents cannot see him – in fact have no idea that he exists – and who feels left out of a family’s normal life. He adapts Pink Floyd to his purposes and dictates a rocker of a song to Anandita that makes the band a hit, but neither Arjun nor Anandita can credit their ‘ghostwriter’.
Mandana has imagined the problems which might arise from having a ghost in the house, especially one that feels left out and wants to connect with his parents. Amit is only visible to his siblings and the old maid. His mother has had a nervous breakdown in the past thinking that her twins need a shrink because they’re talking to imaginary companions. Threaded together by music, Trapped tells the story of a bunch of teens who have a paranormal problem to add to their normal school and adolescent hormone issues.
The ramifications of teens and paranormal activity might have been enough for the story, especially since Amit’s father also gets involved and realizes the need to connect with the third child whom he cannot see, but whose presence he has sensed. Mandana however adds yet another paranormal presence with the twist – that this second spook is totally invisible to everyone including Amit.
Scary moments notwithstanding, the additional spirit adds nothing to the plot barring pointing out the problems that may affect a ghost. In a world where children grown up and move on, what chance has a ghost whose spaces and communication are restricted? Is Amit really trapped or can he find an escape route through his songs?
Added 14th July 2016