“The Voices” – Review By Zachary Marsh


If you’re looking for a darkly funny, twisted, and psychologically insane movie, then “The Voices” might be right up your alley.  Starring Ryan Reynolds, Anna Kendrick, and a slew of other familiar faces, this is a film that distributor Lionsgate, in my opinion, totally missed the mark on with this.  I mean, this isn’t the most conventional of dark-comedy/psychological thrillers, but it still could have made some solid money had it been marketed and released wide enough.  Instead, they gave it a cheap, lazy, and uninspired On Demand release to coincide with a limited theater run at the same time.  I complain about this because this isn’t just any film that deserves to be thrown into theater like a piece of garbage.  This movie not only premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews, but it also played at several festivals following that, including the Toronto International Film Festival.  Without going into too much detail, basically Ryan Reynolds is a paranoid schizophrenic who talks to his dog Bosco, a representation of good, and his cat Mr. Whiskers, a representation of evil.  Oh, I should probably mention that the pets are also voiced by Reynolds.

Personally, I believe this is a film that is best to go into without knowing a whole lot.  Knowing too much about it would ruin the countless surprises that lie within this twisted flick.  Ryan Reynolds is superb here, playing the creepy yet sympathetic Jerry in such a way that you’ll never look at the actor the same way again.  He’s also great as the cat and dog, each sporting their own unique voice that makes them unique and fun.  Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver are also very good here, but this is Reynolds show at the end of the day.  As a current student in Psychology class, the representation of schizophrenia was both dead on and really fascinating to watch.

There’s a scene that immediately comes to mind where Jerry, well, stops hearing the voices, and what the audience sees is how not so perfect his home life is, which is very heartbreaking to witness.  It’s not the most perfect film out there, as there were times where it felt like director Marjane Satrapi didn’t know how to accurately blend the psychological thriller and dark comedy genres well, but that doesn’t take away from how cleverly written, well acted and directed, and sharply told the film is at the end of the day.  It took me a few minutes to fully digest what I had seen, and I am overall extremely satisfied with what has been delivered.  If you’re looking for a darkly funny, shockingly sadistic, and overall fascinating look into the life of one messed up dude, then definitely check out “The Voices” when you get the chance.



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