Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Thursday Movie Picks: Movies Narrated by Narrators That Do Not Appear on Screen

This was a difficult theme this week. There are plenty of films out with narration but to add the fact the narrator doesn't appear was tricky. Last week's new release Hail Caesar! would have been a great pick but I thought I'd go with some others, two of which are from my top 10 favourite films. Don't forget to check out what Wandering Through the Shelves picked, the blog that started Thursday Movie Picks.

The Royal Tenenbaums
From the moment you hear Alex Baldwin's silky husky voice, you are welcomed into the arms of the strange but almost functional Tenenbaum family. Three genius siblings, a talented mother and the terrible person as the head, plus s few odd balls, old friends and cuckholded spouses to round out the cast. The intro to the film with its prologue and enjoyable opening credits, Alec Baldwin narrates us through the story with ease. 

The Virgin Suicides
I half thought about not including this pick, mostly because it is unclear if the narrator actually appears in the story but the actor, Giovanni Ribisi, does not physically appear. The strange and tragic story about 5 sisters in the 1970s who are kept away from society (practically) to the point they literally lock them away in their house, forcing them to commit suicide. On the surface, it may be obvious as to why they did it, but there is a constant mist of mystery surrounding the girls thats never really solved. The narrator acts as another spectator, rather than offering another point of view but its needed to voice the thoughts of those who don't speak. This is the film that I see as Sofia Coppola's winning film, not the over blown Lost in Translation. 

Another film with a most excellent opening prologue and introduction. The narrator, AndrĂ© Dussollier, gives us, the audience a few facts about key characters and even minor ones too, with light anecdotes accompanied by equally amusing visuals. The narrator is actually intergual to the story of Amelie as she tries to do kind acts for people, as well as fall in love and try to decide what she wants from life. The narrator expresses feelings for the characters in the most deadpan way which I loved. 


  1. wendell ottley9 March 2016 at 23:02

    I've only seen Amelie, which I liked not loved. Perfect fit for this toughest of topics, though. Had a hard time coming up with three, myself.

  2. I love The Royal Tenenbaums, it's one of my favorite Wes Anderson movies. Amelie is also a wonderful movie. Not a big fan of The Virgin Suicides though; I have seen the movie but could not finish the book.

  3. Excellent list although I should note that the narration in The Virgin Suicides by Giovanni Ribisi is actually an older version of one of the boys in the film. I could see why it may be confusing as it's never known who of the four boys is narrating.

  4. Andrew Ellington10 March 2016 at 13:02

    LOVE all three of these films! L-O-V-E!

  5. Great picks! I love all three of these, like, a lot!

  6. Thanks! Oh I knew he was one of the boys but as we never know which one, so I thought I'd get away with this pick :)

  7. Great to see the love for these picks!

  8. I agree it was difficult. I kept wanting to pick films where the narrator doubled up or did eventually appear.

  9. Oh wow, I don't think I could get through the book, its kinda grim. The Royal Tenenbaums is in my top 10 all time favourites, as is Amelie, such wonderous films :)