How can I tell them I have no internal monologue?

Honestly, that was the funniest line from any Austin Powers movie. And there were lots of funny lines, too. You won’t admit it in public, but you laughed. A lot.

I love movies and TV shows with voiceovers. My two favorite movies — Sunset Blvd. and American Beauty — have voiceovers (both by dead guys). Also on my Top 100 Movies list is Taxi Driver, Blade Runner (some versions, not all), and The Usual Suspects. Veronica Mars, Moonlight, Pushing Daises, even the beginning and ending of Desperate Housewives (only half credit there, although I do love Mary Alice) — all of them have voiceovers.

I’m not talking about voicing animated features, although I have the highest respect for those talented actors. I’m talking about a disembodied narrator, usually voicing the internal monologue of one of the main characters. I’m also not spelling it “voice-over,” since it is the natural evolution of such words to move from two-word phrases to hyphenated words and then to single compound words. I think it’s time to move along.

Why do I love voiceovers? I can see what the characters are doing, and I can hear what they’re saying. But I don’t know what they’re thinking unless I can “hear” their thoughts. I’m all about the motivation, the point of view — how does the character feel about that?

I’m sure that many folks find voiceovers cheesy. To me, it’s like an ongoing commentary track by the author or screenwriter. Of course, occasionally I get duped by the unreliable narrator, but that’s okay. I’m happy to be along for the ride.

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One Response to How can I tell them I have no internal monologue?

  1. Beanie says:

    My all-time fave voiceover? Dead Like Me. I thought Georgie was brilliant. God, I miss that show.

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