The Voices

Watched as part of the March 2017 Letterboxd Scavenger Hunt
My list | Matt Minton's master list
#30: A film from host Matt Minton's list "A List of My Favorites: Movies I Love to the Moon and Back"

2017 movie viewings, #62. I had been wondering how it could possibly be that I had never even once heard that Ryan Reynolds made a black comedy just a couple of years ago in which his pet cat urges him to kill everyone in his office, co-starring Gemma Arterton and Anna Kendrick, and directed by no less than brilliant Iranian-French Muslim comics artist Marjane Satrapi; and then I actually watched The Voices, and realized that the reason I had never heard of it is because it is literally one of the worst screenplays I've seen in the last decade. Written by Michael R. Perry, who up to then was a veteran of the low end of generic weekly television (having penned scripts for such "I'm too lazy to get up and turn it off" shows like The Practice, Law & Order and The Dead Zone), this takes what could've been a delightfully subversive premise (Reynolds is a schizophrenic off his meds, whose pet dog and cat argue at night over whether or not he should become a serial killer) and just sucks every bit of fun or intelligence out of it, continually delivering lines that are the most bland and generic versions of anything Perry could've inserted at that particular moment, with a plot that creaks along with such plodding obviousness that I felt like I was at some overpriced Screenwriting 101 workshop being held in a run-down conference room at the Van Nuys Days Inn. A film that clearly feels like a desperate turn for Satrapi, so that she can "stay in the game" in Hollywood and not have her agent drop her (her film career started by directing the adaptation of her own astounding comics memoir Persepolis, but with her next two movies garnering mixed reviews at best), both she and we deserve better than this (although whether Reynolds does is another matter), a movie that just made me depressed for everyone involved while speeding my way through it at 3x. Avoid at all costs.

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