The use of voiceover in movies is a hotly debated topic among cinephiles and critics. Is it lazy filmmaking or can it be an effective narrative tool in the right hands? The truth is it’s a little of both. Blade Runner’s voiceover is so infamous that it has essentially been expunged from movie history. On the other hand classic and modern classic movies like All About Eve and Adaptation employ voice over so well that it’s impossible to imagine them without it. And not only that, but once you begin to look at how directors use voiceover you begin to see just how many ways the device can be employed—and has been employed in some of your favorite movies.
Want more on how filmmakers use various narrative devices to tell a story? Check out this video on the unreliable narrator. And if you just can't get enough of video essayist Leigh Singer's work, be sure to watch his other two part series (parts one and two) on how CGI has been used to age actors in movies. And if you want a whole list of movies available to stream on Fandor that employ voiceover in amazing and interesting ways, check out our Spotlight on the Invisible Storyteller.