THE BLOG
08/14/2013 09:06 pm ET Updated Oct 14, 2013

Popcorn Preview: In a World...

Film: In a World... (2013)
Cast includes: Lake Bell (What Happens in Vegas, Boston Legal), Rob Corddry (Warm Bodies), Ken Marino (Role Models), Demetri Martin (Contagion), Fred Melamed (A Serious Man), Michaela Watkins (Wanderlust), Nick Offerman (21 Jump Street)
Writer/Director: Lake Bell (debut feature film)
Genre: Comedy (93 minutes)

Louis is in a panic... "Eva Longoria can't get the accent. She sounds like a retarded pirate. She needs coaching. Didn't mean any offense, saying 'retarded'..." Carol Solomon is a voice coach, secretly aspiring to climb the career ladder and become a voice-over artist. "In a world..." Carol says in her voice-over voice when her dad wakes her in the morning. He's not amused. "Those words are for Don LaFontaine only." Carol's dad, Sam Soto (his stage name), is a famous voice-over with a yummy honey baritone voice... almost as famous as the late Don LaFontaine... "Gigantic shoes to fill." LaFontaine was the voice of "The Amazon Games"... with the iconic "In a world..." Anyway, Sam is kicking Carol out. "I read an article from Yahoo Health about enabling," says Sam. His latest girlfriend... Carol's age... is moving in, so it's time for Carol to find a place of her own. "I gave you all my contacts." He knows she wants to be a voice-over, but that's not possible. "I can't give you my voice! The industry does not crave a female voice. You should stick with the accents. That's your thing."

"You're Sam Soto's kid," says the new receptionist. Don't rub it in... that's why she doesn't use his stage name. "He's getting a lifetime achievement award, for Christ's sake." After coaching Eva not to sound like a retarded pirate, the studio need a down-n-dirty voice-over for a trailer and Gustav Warner is tied up. "Sure, I'll do it," says Carol. Meanwhile, Sam's just found out they're remaking "The Amazon Games." He's not going to audition... instead he wants to "pass the torch" to Gustav... "You could be the next LaFontaine." Gustav's in a snit because that trailer he was supposed to record... "I lost it to a broad... a two-bit vocal coach." They liked her voice, and now he's lost out on two more trailers. "Look, as soon as you resurrect those three little words... "In a world"... you're gonna own this town."

Eventually, Gustav will find out that the broad who got that job is Sam's daughter. And eventually, Carol is going to find out Sam's trying to get Gustav the new "Amazon Games" assignment. She could kill for that job. Add the other characters and plot lines, and this story begins to feel almost Shakespearian in it's convoluted complexity. "There are 100 voice-over artist... only five making all the money." It's a cutthroat, incestuous little universe, and this film takes us into the inner circle. Everyone knows everyone's business, and snarky comments are almost blood sport... often in stage voices and funny accents. But in the real world... there's one voice that Carol really can't deal with... the fake baby doll voice you hear everywhere. "If a Beanie Baby could talk!" In a World... was written and directed by Lake Bell, who also does a terrific job of playing Carol. It's her debut feature film as a writer/director, and hopefully, we'll be seeing more of her work. Some are already comparing her to Woody Allen, and it's not hard to see why. This wonderfully quirky film is a true original, chock full of delightful surprises. Despite it's low-key art house opening, this film could easily appeal to mainstream audiences. It's getting great word of mouth, even though "the industry does not crave a female voice."

4 popped kernels (Scale: 0-4)
Carol aspires to be a voice-over artist like her famous father, but he's convinced she can't do it

Popcorn Profile
Audience: Young adults
Distribution: Art house
Mood: Upbeat
Tempo: Zips right along
Visual Style: Unvarnished realism
Primary Driver: Plot and character development
Language: Irreverent
Social Significance: Pure entertainment

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