Fri 23 Nov 2012
There are many interesting scenes and ideas in Sound a My Voice, the first film of director Zal Batmanglij. Co-written with Brit Marling, one of the two feminine stars of the film it tells the story of a young couple who engage in a potentially dangerous undercover investigation of a cult built around a woman who no less but claims to come from the future. A future where the world seems to have pedaled back in technology and the (American) nation is engaged in a civil war. With the action paced by the separation in ten segments, the story advances in a way that presents the facts in a supposedly objective manner and lets the viewer guess where the truth is. Premises are interesting.
So, who is really the fascinating Maggie (played by Marling), the inspiring leader of the cult – a con-artist full of charisma and psychological intuition or maybe she is really what she claims? And whom of the two young investigators, Peter (Christopher Denham) and Lorna (Nicole Vicius) will truly fall under her spell? There are enough reasons to be on the edge for most of the time of the screening, and the completely open ending leads to the thoughts about this film to follow the viewers after leaving the cinema hall.
Despite of the many good intentions and ideas, Sound of My Voice however disappoints. It is maybe the film-making which really never seems to aspire to go beyond the good B-movies level. Or maybe the lack of consistency (derived from lack of experience in writing the script? The good script and the original story makes the film raise above the usual horror or investigation genres. Unfortunately the director stopped mid-way, and the promises are only partly fulfilled. There is however enough good stuff in Sound of My Voice to make me expect better things from the careers of Batmanglij and Marling.