Cold Souls (2009)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy, Drama


Cold Souls (2009) Poster

Paul is an actor who feels bogged down by his participation in a production of Chekov's play, Vanya.

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6.5/10
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  • David Strathairn in Cold Souls (2009)
  • Katheryn Winnick in Cold Souls (2009)
  • Paul Giamatti in Cold Souls (2009)
  • Katheryn Winnick at an event for Cold Souls (2009)
  • Katheryn Winnick at an event for Cold Souls (2009)
  • Sophie Barthes in Cold Souls (2009)

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27 August 2010 | napierslogs
6
| A great premise that turns very cold
"Cold Souls" begins with possibly the best premise I have seen on film. It is fitting that screenwriter Sophie Barthes was nominated for Best First Screenplay from the Independent Spirit Awards. Paul Giamatti plays Paul Giamatti, an actor struggling with the weight of Checkov. Uncle Vanya is weighing down his soul. This is a problem afflicting most New Yorkers, but there is now a solution. A company can extract your soul and keep it in storage for you. Brilliant.

The opening scenes offer some insightful humour and intelligent wit, and offers a fair number of laughs for everybody who immediately saw the comedy in the premise. David Strathairn and Giamatti have great interactions and are very funny, both together and on their own.

The rest of movie, though, plays out like a dark mystery or thriller which doesn't really fit the wonderful comedic start. The main obstacle for our hero, and the thriller plot are significantly darker and melodramatic than I was expecting. Although it is titled "Cold Souls", I was hoping for less cold and more soul-fulfilling insightful humour.

It is a dark comedy, so probably a must-see for fans of the genre. However, I think one of the problems with coming up with such an inventive idea, is viewers will likely form their own story line, so if it doesn't play out as you would have written it, it will seem disappointing and disjointed as it did for me. But that being said, the interest and intrigue behind this story would be too much to pass this up.

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