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Old April 17 2012, 09:18 AM   #508
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Re: Movies Seen in 2012

55. Freakonomics (C+)
56 Sound of My Voice (A-)

Freakonomics: The problem with this documentary is that it is impossible to offer the substance of the book (such as it is) in 90 minutes. Consisting of four chapters (plus bridging segments), there's not even enough time to put the book's arguments on screen, let alone cover new ground. Even the final segment -- which covers a study of the use of financial incentives to improve grades in high school (not in the book) -- doesn't have enough time to accomplish much before it's over.

It's a shame the movie is so mediocre. Not only is the movie well budgeted, but the talent involved (Heidi Ewing, Alex Gibney, Seth Gordon, Rachel Grady, Eugene Jarecki, and Morgan Spurlock) is essentially a whose who of the documentary filmmaking world. The movie entertains, but is hardly essential, especially if you've read the book.

Sound of My Voice: This is a fantastic micro-budget film that may or may not be science fiction, depending on how you read certain scenes (the audience was polled after the screening; they seemed split on the issue). It pertains a couple who join a cult in order to make a documentary exposing it. At the center of the cult is a women who claims to be from the year 2054, played wonderfully by Brit Marling (who co-wrote and produced, as she did on Another Earth). Is she from the future? The film has no clear-cut answers (and presents many dangling pieces of information without and kind of pandering explanation), but it's surprisingly satisfying.

It enters limited release in ten days and is worth seeing if you're interested in personal, low budget sf(?) cinema.

Theatres: 22 +1
Home Video: 30
Computer: 4 +1
"This begs explanation." - de Forest Research on Star Trek

My blog: Star Trek Fact Check.
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