Little Voice (1998) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski) and Tuna
comments in white:
"Little Voice" is a cool little movie, in which three of the four principals were nominated for acting awards, and the fourth is Ewan McGregor, who wasn't so bad either. It's about a young woman who hasn't left the house since her father died. She is meek and totally browbeaten by her loudmouth alkie mum, so she withdraws into her beloved dad's favorite music. Turns out she can perfectly mimic all the singers on those albums (Judy Garland, Shirley Bassey, Marilyn Monroe and others), so a sleazebag third-rate talent agent (Michael Caine) sees her as his way out, and will do anything to con and exploit her into performing publicly.
The Brits seems to have a knack for these oddball films filled with quirky characters. Jane Horrocks is dazzling in her singing role. The girl can sing, too, I mean really sing - she did all her own songs for the film. Michael Caine got that charity Oscar for The Cider House Rules, but it made up for the fact that nobody noticed how good he was the previous year in this offbeat role.
I don't like musicals that much, but I liked it a lot. Elya and my daughter loved it.
|In fact, this is a case where they needed to find a US distributor with some balls, willing to wait out some opportunities, maybe advertise a bit, because good notices and good word of mouth might have made this a hit. I've never met anyone who saw it and didn't like it. It could have gotten some Oscar nominations, in my opinion.||
comments in yellow:
I have no idea how I
missed this film when it came out. I rented it based on the fact that
it was rated R, hoping for some nudity, but with no expectations. Had
I checked IMDB first, I would have noticed that it is a foreign
comedy, yet has an amazing 7.1/10 score from IMDB readers.
Brenda Blethyn received an Oscar nomination as best supporting
actress, and the film garnered a Golden Globe for Michael Caine for
his role as a sleazy talent promoter. UK gross was £8.054m, but US
release was a total flop (3 screens, $93,722). Hmmmmm, maybe that is
why I missed it.
|As soon as this review
is sent, I am ordering both the film and the soundtrack. Were it not a
foreign musical comedy, which a lot of people don't like, I would
grade it higher, but I will say B.
The soundtrack from Little Voice, for some reason known only to them, features the original artists on all but two tracks. The good news, is that there is a British import available that is all Jane.
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