It doesn't take a movie critic to know what the best part of any movie is...the trailer.
If that doesn't surprise you then "In a World.." by Lake Bell just might. When I say it's by Lake Bell, I mean she's the writer, director and lead in it. Don't dismiss this as another bloated vanity project (Yes, Lone Ranger, I'm looking at you) or you could be missing out on one of the best films of the summer.
Carol (Lake Bell) is a part-time voice coach with slacker urges. When her dad, the voiceover king (Fred Melamed) kicks her out as a way to force her to grow up (and move his hot girlfriend in), she decides to take a stab at voiceover work herself. Despite her dad's wishes, she starts to make headway, including an audition for the highly-touted "Amazon Games" quadrilogy. It's like "Hunger Games" but with women, loincloths and cool panoramas. Carol has to find a way to juggle her dad's opposition (and jealousy), the heir apparent to the voiceover crown Gustav (Ken Marino) who happens to be her dad's protege, and quite a bit of sexism from all fronts.
Sounds fun? That's because it is.
Just like her onscreen persona, Bell wears a lot of hats and they all seem to fit as though they were custom made and all enjoyably crazy. The writing has a feminist message, but it's so decked out in her unique brand of screwball humor that it brings it home without you even knowing it. Anyone who's seen her on "Children's Hospital" realizes how gifted she is at physical comedy and probably has the accidental scars to prove it. Movie fans will also be delighted at how she pays tribute to the late Don LaFontaine and probably every female comedienne that's graced the big screen.
Bell the director is as sharp as the writer/actress as she knows that an indie is only as good as the people in it, especially when you lack the budget to finance Greek for the next decade. Bell feeds the audience a healthy dose of "Children's Hospital" cohorts Rob Corddry as her brother in law and of course Marino as her would-be rival/love interest. Nick Offerman is in it just because his deadpan delivery seems to make all movies better ("Meet the Millers is proof" if you need any.)
"In a World" is a hilariously good-natured trip through the business behind the business. It's full of characters to root for without wondering if they left their cape at home. Best of all, it showcases one of the brightest stars on the indie scene and hopefully we live in a world where we see a lot more of her.