Criticism | Voices and Figures – Netflix Bipolar Movie Promises Terror, Delivers Weak Drama

The Ripley Without Talent

In The Talented Ridley (1999), ambitious “parasite” Tom Ripley (Matt Damon) finds himself tasting and clinging to the good life, even though he ends up cheating, hiding, lying, falsifying and, ultimately, achieve their goals. , as well as all the unscrupulous killings. Of course, the film, already a modern classic, is based on a book by Patricia Highsmith, and directed by Anthony Minghella. And in case you haven’t seen it, stop everything and run to watch. And if you’ve already checked it out, review it. Definitely a better option than trying out this Voices and Vultures – this week’s Netflix version.

Netflix is ​​currently an audiovisual colossus and has already signed contracts with several heavyweights in the entertainment industry – among actors, directors, screenwriters and others. It’s also clear that with almost full-scale production, not everything will be gold. This is the case with this “terror” mequetrefe with Amanda Seyfried. She even took part in good house productions, like the recent Mank (by David Fincher), for which she received her first Oscar nomination – which aired on Sunday April 25.

But because I quoted The Talented Ripley at the beginning of the text, you must be wondering. Well, is that in this screenplay, based on Elizabeth Brundage’s book, adapted by real-life married director couple Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, one can find strong echoes of such work in one of its subplots. And if history had taken care to only develop such clips, who knows we might have a more effective film. Turns out in the mix we still have supernatural elements of a haunted house and a feminist message (which is the highlight of the work).

In the plot, Seyfried is a young mother placed at a crossroads. She is invited to give up her professional life as a restorer of works of art in the city in order to support the career of her husband, who plans to take her inland, to live in a large house in a rural area. next to young people. daughter of both. All of this in the transition from the late 1970s to the 1980s, which made the place of women even more delicate in a relationship and in society itself. In the new town, her husband, played by James Norton (from the Nevers series), will take up a post as an art teacher, while he hopes to finish his book. In addition to the duo, the cast also includes Natalia Dyer (Stranger Things) and veterans F. Murray Abraham (Oscar winner for Amadeus) and Karen Allen (the eternal Marion of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Ark). Lost).

As soon as they arrive in the new house, the protagonists’ marriage problems begin to bleed like an open wound showing their enormous fragility. It doesn’t take long for the subject to exhale his toxic masculinity, demean his wife at every opportunity, including starting an affair with a young woman, and behaving erratically on several occasions – with offensive comments, among others. It was perhaps a lot easier to demonize such behavior today, and so the point of the story by placing time a few decades in the past is to assert this momentum as something more “common” for this period. In any case, it is impossible to close our eyes to the interesting feminist discourse offered by the feature film: with the young woman trapped in an unhappy marriage, next to a real “fret” with a capital T, finding her voice to stop it in the situation. And perhaps that was the element that drew Seyfried to the project.

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The directors are talented and have prestigious works acclaimed by the press: among them, American Anti-Hero (2003) stands out – which earned them an Oscar nomination for an adapted screenplay. Of course, this is an element of equal attraction for any artist, and it wouldn’t be any different with those involved here. Despite this fair and dignified subplot, going one step further with the “Talented Ripley” factor of the husband, in which the wife begins to unravel a real web, which arrives like a snowball that only increases with the lack of character in the personality of this “score” with which she joined; the problem is precisely the connection with a lame supernatural part, which just doesn’t connect.

Ah yes, you have to keep in mind that Voices and Figures is presented as terror, in case you were wondering where the genre is in this plot. Well, he appears in the couple’s new residence, which is believed to be haunted by the spirits of former residents. And guess what: the guy was a misogynistic sexist who ends up killing his wife and their souls stay put – making history repeat itself. So the woman is there to help, while the subject haunts those who have no heart. As if things weren’t always on the verge of going downhill, how about a break with Seyfried’s meteoric involvement with a young relative of the former residents, who is now doing repair work on the protagonists? Subtract the one that goes from nowhere to nowhere.

You can see where in Vozes e Vultos hides a much better movie, but for that it would be necessary to peel off the layers and throw in the spare – in addition to further polishing what should be the backbone of this tale. . Unfortunately, not even with all the skill of the filmmakers, they are able to craft a cohesive feature film. We thus find ourselves with a mixture between a serious and sober theme, and another more fantastic that they will never be able to dialogue between them. Other than that, the 120 minutes of screening dragged on making the experience unnecessarily lengthy, while for the end result, half an hour less would do. To put the nail in the coffin, if you’re one of those bothered by the anticlimatic results, wait and see how the end of that voice and numbers ended and get ready to scream.

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