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Little Voice: Movie review

Updated on June 10, 2015
Little Voice.
Little Voice. | Source

Little Voice: A truly amazing film starring Jane Horrocks, Brenda Blethyn & Michael Caine

This movie was made back in 1998 so you may not have seen it - or even heard of it - and yet it's one of the favorites in my DVD collection. It tells a captivating story which is made even more so by the acting of the main characters. It's a British-made comedy / drama / tragedy and was made in Yorkshire, (like me).

Are the characters believable?

Now that I live in the States, I sometimes view things with an American eye and this makes me wonder what people from other countries will make of this film. Are there really people such as those portrayed by Brenda Blethyn and Michael Caine? Surely, they are caricatures? I'm here to tell you that yes, they are realistic. But before we get to the truly amazing Jane Horrocks, let's take a look at the other two main characters.

Brenda Blethyn

This wonderful actress plays the part of a middle-aged widow who likes a good time. Are there really women like that? Oh yes.I have known dozens of northern women who seem to be bursting out of their clothes, who wear short skirts, far too much make up and whose social lives involve going down to the local club to see what man they can pick up tonight. I know this woman. She's waiting for a man to 'take her away from all this'.

Michael Caine

What a wonderful performance. He is a sleazy, small-time theatrical agent who is sure that he'll find a great star one day to make him rich. Just as I know dozens of women who are like the Blethyn character, I have also met a few guys who are exactly like the part Michael Caine plays. In fact, he could have based his performance on them - exactly. The pair meet up, start a relationship and eventually think that they have found the road to riches because of Blethyn's mousy daughter, Little Voice.

Jane Horrocks

Little Voice, or LV as she is known, is a shy and withdrawn teenager. She's smart and she has a wonderful hidden talent but at first, when you see her in the film, this doesn't come across at all. But she has a secret. Left alone when her mother is out on the town, she listens to her late father's old-style gramophone records of singers gone by; Judy Garland, Shirley Bassey, Edith Piaf, Vera Lynn and more. And her secret is that she can sing exactly like them.

Is this the answer to everyone's problems?

If the sleazy agent can persuade her to let him market her talents, he'll have a huge star; she's the big break he's been waiting for.

The Blethyn character thinks that she has found the man of her dreams.

Together, thanks to LV, they'll both have what they have seen searching for.

Or will they?

Some of my favorite scenes

In this clip, Brenda Blethyn is telling her friend about her new lover. I love her monologue and the line 'He has that slight look of Elvis about him'.

Brenda Blethyn at her best. This scene shows her taking her new lover home for the first time. Remember this is a British film- profanity alert.

Did you know that Jane Horrocks really did perform all the songs? The stage play, that became the film,was written especially because of her ability. Note that she can only perform when she pictures her late father,

I liked MIchael Caine in Alfie. I liked him in The Italian Job. But I never really rated him as an actor - I thought he just played himself. I was riveted, gobsmacked and astonished at this. PROFANITY ALERT.

You might also like this

As a companion piece to this film, you might also want to purchase this.

Saving Grace
Saving Grace

Brenda Blethyn stars in this film in a completely different role that shows her skill as an actor.

In Saving Grace she is still a middle-aged widow but of a completely different type.

Her husband has left her in considerable debt and this gentle, locally-admired lady is in danger of losing her beautiful home. Unknown to her, her gardener is growing an 'illegal substance' in the grounds of her property.

Can that be the answer to her problems? A group of us watched this in the cinema here in Florida - it is truly hilarious.


© 2013 Jackie Jackson


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    • BritFlorida profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Jackson 

      4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @JohnTannahill - even better! I think you'd enjoy the film. I'm pretty sure that it shows Michael Caine's acting at its best and it's so very funny with the touch of pathos that you'd expect from a Yorkshire-based film.

    • JohnTannahill profile image

      John Tannahill 

      4 years ago from Somewhere in England

      I have never seen this particular film but I'm sure I'll catch up eventually. Incidentally, that Mike Leigh film I was going on about also has Jane Horrocks and Jim Broadbent in it.

    • BritFlorida profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Jackson 

      5 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @sousababy: Good to know I'm not alone :) Michael Caine was just brilliant in this film. Add the other actors, the music and a great plot and it adds up to one of my favourite films ever.

    • sousababy profile image


      5 years ago

      Wow, Michael Caine certainly played his role seamlessly - I too knew a few blokes like that.


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