Netflix A-Z: The Voices (2014)

We’re nearing the end of our second round of Netflix A-Z! We can start our countdown from 5 on the letter V and for this one, it was a debate between Vampire Academy and The Voices.  Since my husband was the one choosing, I didn’t think he’d want to go through the misery of watching the first choice so we landed on the second.  Honestly, I’ve been intrigued by The Voices. It has a pretty decent cast and it looks funny and weird all at the same time.

Let’s check it out! 🙂

The Voices (2014)

the voices

Director: Marjane Satrapi

Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, Jacki Weaver

A likable guy pursues his office crush with the help of his evil talking pets, but things turn sinister when she stands him up for a date.-IMDB

The Voices is a lot of things.  Its funny, awkward, quirky, a little disturbing and most of surprisingly fun to watch. I like the cast.  Ryan Reynolds hasn’t disappointed me other than the time when he was in Green Lantern and even then I don’t think it was his fault. Gemma Arterton has proved, especially in Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunter that she has the chops to play horror comedy sort of movies.  And well, I’m just a huge fan of Anna Kendrick who is incredibly funny in her little awkward way. The Voices pieces together a nice little horror comedy.  It definitely builds into a look into the mind of our main character, Jerry who is kind of sweet but lives in a rather deep fantasy.  His reality isn’t all that great.

The Voices

In a way, its hard to dislike Jerry even if he is a murderer.  He’s lonely and mentally unstable.  Its partially his fault because reality makes him lonely so he doesn’t take the medication he needs which his psychiatrist, played by Jacki Weaver, urges him over and over to do in order to continue on these treatments. That is besides the point.  To a certain extent, Jerry is extremely clueless.  He is influenced by his mind and I’m guessing this is some statement about mental health in here, not in the violent way but just how it really affects you.  The Voices are essentially just his companions.  I mean not in the way that his voices which are in his head but like his pets, Mr. Whiskers and Bosco. And these pets are like the angel and devil sitting on his shoulder and they are absolutely  hilarious.  They might actually be my favorite part of the movie.  The surprising part (apparently my husband didn’t find it at all surprising) was that Ryan Reynolds voiced the pets. He does a fine job at it.

The Voices

If I were to criticize just one little part was that the ending felt like it lost a little bit of steam portraying him unravelling.  Still, it was a lot of fun to watch.  I like dark comedies a lot and its rare nowadays to even find comedies that I actually think work.  This was an unexpected surprise.  I didn’t have much expectation of how this would go but I’m happy that it was as enjoyable as it was.

Overall, a fun little black comedy with some great performances.  Its probably one of my favorite roles of Ryan Reynolds, especially with his voice work as Mr. Whiskers.  It winds down a disturbing path as the story unfolds and we see his character Jerry unravel and break apart mentally in a way.  Its a worth a watch if dark comedies are your thing.

Have you seen The Voices? What do you think about it?

Halloween Marathon: Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)

Whats a Halloween marathon without a flick about witches and hunters? I chose Friday when I was all alone sitting at home, not wanting to watch a horror movie and not sleep all night, so I put in Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters.  I had seen a part of this before when my boyfriend saw it a few weeks ago but I never review anything without having put my full attention in it.  I had a good idea what to expect from the little bit I had seen…

hansel and gretel posterDirector: Tommy Wirkola

Cast: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen, Pihla Viitala, Derek Mears, Ingrid Bolso Berdal, Thomas Mann

We all know the story of Hansel and Gretel.  In this new version, young Hansel and Gretel are deserted by their parents and in the witch’s place, they overturn her evil plan and end up burning her alive to save themselves.  Ever since then, Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel’s (Gemma Arterton) life was being hired to hunt witches for a living and having each other’s back.  Years later, they’ve built themselves some rep and they get hired by the mayor of a small town where children have been going missing.  They end up saving Mina, who is assumed to be a witch, from the clutches of the Sheriff and try to figure out who is behind these evil plans and to save the children.  As the Blood Moon approaches, they start suspecting that there is a greater plan for a group of witches lead by Muriel (Famke Janssen) that they need to stop.

hansel and gretel 1

I’m going to tell you right now.  I tend to like ridiculous movies like these.  Call it a guilty pleasure if you’d like.  I class these with Resident Evil: Retribution and Van Helsing.  Not all that great in any aspect but somehow the bad adds up to being a fairly decent form of entertainment.  However, this one doesn’t hit the same level of “so bad its good” as say, my absolutely fave Resident Evil.  Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is charming because of the two main characters.  As cheesy as those lines can get, it does work to get a few laughs.  And then they also had some pretty nice weapons that they used and it made the characters look extremely cool and badass.

hansel and gretel 3

Now, I was a bit surprised that this was categorized as horror, but hey, I need a break from so much dark suspenseful things.  You don’t want to know the contents of my dreams/nightmares after a few nights of extreme horror (I promise you, thats coming up).  This one is a horror comedy and even though it strives to be gory at times with the murders and whatnot, it really isn’t anything too intense, actually for the most part, when someone does die, I was laughing at the bad computer graphics.  Thinking about it now, I actually still have a smile stretching across my face.  Good times, right?

hansel and gretel 2

There isn’t really much to compliment when looking at this silly fantasy/horror/adventure flick.  I can’t even seem to pinpoint what it really wants to do but at least they had some good looking characters and some of them are actually decent actors and actresses.  Honestly, I watched this for the very charming Jeremy Renner.  He can say the silliest things and do the most illogical things and I’ll still think he’s pretty cool. Gemma Arterton is pretty and plays the whole tough chick role very well.  One actress I’d like to mention is the actress Famke Janssen who plays Muriel, the evil witch.  I think she naturally has this super evil, cruel, manipulating feeling to her acting.  If this movie doesn’t convince you, well, head on over and watch her in Hemlock’s Grove.  As much as I’m on the fence about that series, she was the best of part that as well.

Overall, Hansel and Gretel is simply a brainless fantasy/action/horror flick full of silly dialogues and bad CGI but has moments where these elements combined can make for some laughs.  Maybe you are laughing at the movie itself, but if you have a hard day’s work and want to shut off your mind, this might prove to have some entertainment value.  Just remember that you really need to fully close it off  (as I did).

What did you think about Hansel and Gretel? We’ve had a lot of classic tales retold in the last few years, which is your favorite? Do you enjoy those sort of storylines?