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Sunday, August 25, 2013

In A World...



In A World... assures you'll never listen to a movie trailer the same way again. Written, produced, directed by, and starring Lake Bell as an underachieving voice coach with a gift for accents, In A World... shines a light on an industry within the movie industry rarely given much thought to: the surprisingly cut-throat world of Hollywood voice over work. Ruled for decades by the late Don LaFontaine, whose distinctive voice and catchphrase "In a world..." kicked off countless movie trailers, the Hollywood voice over industry turns out to be a rat's nest of vain, opportunistic, sexist slimeballs. 

One of those slimeballs jockeying to fill the void left by LaFontaine is Bell's father Fred Melamed. A real piece of work with a trophy wife Bell's age, Melamed is himself a vainglorious voice over legend who thinks nothing of cutting his own daughter off at the knees to have his voice grace the trailer of the biggest movie "quadrilogy" on the horizon, "The Amazon Games", a riff on the mega-popular The Hunger Games saga. Melamed kicks Bell out of his "crash pad", which sends her onto the couch of her sister Michaela Watkins and her PB&J loving husband Rob Corddry. Bell gets a stroke of luck when she's chosen to voice the trailer of "The Amazon Games," essentially stealing the plum job from the young stud of the voice over industry, Ken Marino. But only one of their melodious voices can be the voice of the new generation of Hollywood trailers.

Fitfully funny and quirky throughout, with a tremendous cast including Nick Offerman, Alexandra Holden, Eva Longoria, Jason O'Mara, Geena Davis, and a cameo by a famous Charlie's Angel, In A World... outright questions why there are virtually no females voicing over movie trailers, which are seen by every person all over the world. Bell's not out to change the world of voice over, however, just to have a place in it. In A World... is more chiefly concerned with matters of family, self-reliance, and self-assurance. An endearingly subtle comedienne, Bell winningly eschews glamor and artifice as the star of In A World... Whether caught in a compromising position in Marino's private memorabilia room, having a series of increasingly sweet moments of awkward courtship with her ADR producer Demetri Martin, or not-so-covertly following any random person with an interesting voice around with her omnipresent tape recorder, Bell is an offbeat charmer, like her movie.

Also, bonus points for Bell's use of Tears For Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World".