Little Voice (1998)

R   |    |  Comedy, Drama, Music


Little Voice (1998) Poster

A shy reclusive lady is convinced by an invisible entity to sing. Subsequently, she finds herself noticed by a sleazy talent agent and her talent being showcased on-stage. She also meets a kind but nervous man who becomes her best friend.

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7/10
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  • Michael Caine and Jane Horrocks in Little Voice (1998)
  • Brenda Blethyn and Philip Jackson in Little Voice (1998)
  • Jane Horrocks in Little Voice (1998)
  • Jane Horrocks in Little Voice (1998)
  • Jane Horrocks in Little Voice (1998)
  • Michael Caine in Little Voice (1998)

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30 December 2003 | SpikeW
9
| Extremely Touching
At the risk of sounding overly sentimental, this is perhaps one of the most touching films I have ever seen, and also one of the most surprising.

Jane Horrocks, Michael Caine and Ewan McGregor all turn in superb performances, with Brenda Blethyn being a tad melodramatic but remaining within the bounds of believability. It's a real pleasure to see Michael Caine in particular, in a role of a shoddy, second-rate agent who believes he's found his passport to 'the big time' in LV. That man is such a great actor.

Bypassing Jane Horrocks' astounding ability to mimic people, it's also a pleasure to see her on the big screen again: she does a heck of a lot of voice work, but to be honest I haven't seen her in a major role since 'Life Is Sweet'. She's a real star and can play demented, disordered, deranged or simply different people with such style...

As for 'Little Voice', the story is a fairly standard setup: unbearably shy LV has a talent, is discovered by the local agent, the road to riches and stardom opens... but love is in the offing, so which will she choose? That summary, however, is where the similarity to virtually any other 'standard' setup stops: LV does not want stardom. She doesn't even really know she has her talent, which is completely passive. Her choice is not between stardom or love.

Virtually nothing beyond the basic storyline is 'standard' here. There's no "*gasp* Wow!" surprises, but events turn in quite unexpected directions at all times. Many folks even complain at the end because "it isn't an end" or "it isn't what we want". That's another reason to love the film: it doesn't give the viewer a Hollywood (yawn) ending. It doesn't tie up all the loose strings.

It's like life: there's no tidy endings. Look past the obvious images and look at what's underneath. See the film for what it is, and enjoy.

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