Sound of My Voice [Blu-ray]
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In his "other" life, Peter is a substitute teacher of an all-girl class of 8 year olds. At a key point in the movie Maggie asks Peter to bring one specific girl from his class to her. How did Maggie know of this girl? Will Peter give in to this request, which amounts to kidnapping? To say much more about the plot would be to ruin your viewing experience. I thought this movie, which clearly was made on a nickel and a dime, was done quite nicely. There is a certain amount of tension from the very beginning that doesn't let up at all until the end of the movie (when Hot Chip's Thieves of the Night plays over the end credits).
Special kudos to Zal Batmanglij (director and co-writer) and of course also to Brit Marling, who also co-wrote the script for this movie. This movie is MILES away from your typical Hollywood main fare. I have no idea why it took over a year for this movie to be released in the theatre (it created quite a buzz when it premiered at the 2011 SXSW film festival), but better later than never I suppose. If you are in the mood for a good indie movie, I can readily recommend "Sound of My Voice".
A documentary filmmaker Peter, and his girlfriend penetrate the mysterious, inner workings of a cult. The members shower, are blindfolded, and driven to a secret meeting place. He is a schoolteacher with dreams of being a director. The mysterious and charismatic cult leader Maggie played by Brit Marling, has returned from the future, to save a select group of people, her followers. She breathes through a tube in the nose, yet occasionally removes the tube and seems to breathe with no bother.
How one can get a camera in without being seen, and film without being noticed is a rather interesting question.
On the surface she seems genuine and legit, though, if you're like me you will wonder, if she is a deluded soul or something more sinister. She appears to have extraordinary empathic and intuitive powers, yet some of what she does raises questions. She punishes bad behavior, and rewards compliance. I found it rather engaging, as when one member is ejected for asking questions, yet she claims this is not the reason for his ejection.
Yet other members clearly become more compliant when she reacts like this. These tactics appear to work on the Peter, when she makes a very strange request of him, and she alienates him from his girlfriend. Maggie remains a mysterious character even to the end, with some intriguing twists and I loved the end.Read more ›
But as time goes on, Maggie seems to be getting under Peter's skin. "We wanted to make a documentary about a cult," Lorna complains to him. "And now we're in one." Things escalate when Maggie demands that Peter prove his loyalty by kidnapping one of his eight-year-old students.
Scanning the reviews I got confirmation for something I'd suspected: the ending of this movie is the major flaw. It's just too darn abrupt, with no follow up. I'm almost positive it had to do with the budget. This film had a shoestring budget and yet still it looks and feels really good. Such a shame about the ending. But even then, you really should see this! Cults are such great fodder for powerful horror. Think of the original Wicker Man. Or the excellent new movie, The Sacrament. This one should stand very comfortably on the same shelf with them.
It was a letdown of sorts; that ending.
`Sound of My Voice' follows a couple, Peter and Lorna, who have fully immersed themselves in a secret cult in order to expose it as a hoax, as a con. The leader of the cult, a young woman named Maggie, claims to be from the future (the year 2054) and claims that she has been sent to help save the people she loves. Her claims are vague and her purpose is even more vague, something that I took issue with. She kept speaking of a place they were leaving for but never explained in depth or even minor detail what or where that place was. The story takes an interesting turn when it broaches on Peter's home life. A substitute teacher, Maggie preys on this aspect of Peter and asks him to get a girl from his class for her. This is where the film starts to pick up and some of Maggie's intentions are made clear...
Or are they?
That's what I don't get. They flirt with letting you in and then completely pull you back.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
When investigative journalists, Peter Aitken (Christopher Denham) and Lorna Michaelson (Nicole Vicius) gain access to a super-obscure cult, they believe they've hit documentary... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Bindy Sue Frønkünschtein
One of the best and more imaginative low budget indie's of the 21st century. This creative team is going places.Published 6 months ago by smoothevity
The main character / cult leader girl was annoyingly bad. I'm surprised I even stuck this one out until the end. In fact, the end is the ONLY good part. Read morePublished 6 months ago by GD
Brit Marling is mesmerizing!!! One of the best actresses I have ever seen on the screen!! She has beauty, warmth and a lot of talent. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Ronald Keneske
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