In a world where voice over work is dominated by men, Carol Soloman (played by writer/director Lake Bell) dreamed of voicing a trailer. Following in her Dad’s footsteps has always been her dream, but the industry was never looking for a woman’s voice to be heard on epic movies, commercials, or really anywhere. Struggling to make ends meet, Carol gets unceremoniously kicked out of her dad’s place so his young girlfriend can move in. Her life kind of hits rock bottom where she needs to stay on her sister’s couch in her studio apartment with her and her husband. With her vocal coaching job is not paying much, thankfully a big break comes her way. And that’s when things get interesting.
While the plotting is fairly predictable with familiar romantic comedy tropes, it’s the supporting cast and Lake Bell’s superb balancing act with their talents that keeps the pacing tight and funny. This is not just Carol’s story of trying her for dream job and finding a boyfriend, it’s a fully developed dysfunctional family story with a touch of workplace comedy and feminist overtones. Don’t let the word feminist throw you off, this is not a preachy film that gets bogged down in a message. Other than one on-the-nose speech from Geena Davis‘s film executive character, the film works as a feminist career woman story without getting too heavy handed and without falling in to cliches.
Dimitri Martin, Ken Marino, Nick Offerman, and Tig Notaro are all fantastic in their supporting roles and bring the laughs in spades. I’m not sure where the credit lies for the biggest laughs – in Lake Bell’s writing, in their performances, or maybe in their adlibbing. However it ended up on the screen though, it all works. Lake Bell has proven herself to be a triple threat and I’m loving her female-empowerment message.