The Voices Review
Every actor known for their comedic delivery thrives off the subjective nature of their craft. By that I mean they build a cult following, much like a classic B horror film, and this following latches onto every film they make. Will Ferrell, Seth Rogen, and Adam Sandler are great examples of this. For many it isn’t necessarily the writing in their movies, the plot, the concept...it’s merely that these individuals are present in the film to deliver in a way they find absolutely hilarious.
Whether this is an admission of guilt or not, I find Ryan Reynolds to be this actor for me. I find his delivery inexplicably humorous. He is the lone bright spot of Blade Trinity, in my humble opinion. So when a dark comedy comes out about Reynolds as a schizophrenic serial killer, I have to take notice. In The Voices, Reynolds plays the part of Jerry, a psychotic killer who deep down means well and has a heart of gold, but whose innocence is constantly rattled by the bickering between the voices in his head, manifested through his pet cat and dog. Boasting the ever-likable Anna Kendrick as a slow-burning love interest, this movie had all the makings of a high quality indie horror comedy.
Sadly, the film lacked Reynolds’ usual onscreen charisma. But, at its expense (and perhaps a symptom of it), Reynolds delivered a rather intriguing performance as a timid, meek, socially inept loser. It stripped him of his ability to deliver lines with ease, but brought with it a memorable character that was unique in its own way. Dark comedies with anti-heroes find a way to balance life-ending effects with good-willed causes in such a way that makes you want to root for the protagonist in between stabbings…somehow.
This film did end in an abruptly ridiculous way, perhaps in an attempt to emphasize the comedy aspect and end on a good note. I won’t say its message wasn’t purposeful, but it felt like it cheapened the film’s climb to the end, and may have been better suited for a somberly bittersweet conclusion.
Packing a decent scale of gore and humor, The Voices was more about the tale than the kills. It seemed to reduce the impact of the film as a whole, but it was still a film I left feeling moderately impressed, both with the plot, its execution, and the courage of the actors to at least sidestep out of their comfort zone.
Horror Qualifier: 6/10
Horror Quality: 5/10
Film Quality: 7/10