6.5/10
9,228
62 user 161 critic

Cold Souls (2009)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 5 May 2010 (France)
Trailer
2:17 | Trailer

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Paul is an actor who feels bogged down by his participation in a production of Chekov's play, Vanya.

Director:

Sophie Barthes

Writer:

Sophie Barthes
4 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Giamatti ... Paul Giamatti
Armand Schultz ... Astrov
Michael Tucker ... Theatre Director
Dina Korzun ... Nina
Ted Koch ... INS Officer
Oksana Lada ... Sasha
Natalia Zvereva ... Blonde Mule
Larisa Bell Larisa Bell ... Russian Singer
Anna Dyukova Anna Dyukova ... Olga (as Anna Dukova)
Charles Techman ... Soul Storage Doorman
Lauren Ambrose ... Stephanie
David Strathairn ... Dr. Flintstein
Laura Heisler ... Female Client in Promo
Brienin Bryant Brienin Bryant ... Young Woman in Soul Storage
Charlotte Mickie Charlotte Mickie ... Mrs. Rathbone
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Storyline

Civilization and its discontents. Paul, an actor preparing for "Uncle Vanya" on Broadway, is mired in ennui. His agent tells him about an office where he can put his soul in storage. He does so then discovers that being soulless helps neither his acting nor his marriage; he returns to the office and rents, for two weeks, the soul of a Russian poet. His acting improves, but his wife finds him different, he sees bits of the borrowed soul's life, and he's now deep in sorrow. He wants his own soul back, but there are complications: it's in St. Petersburg. With the help of Nina, a Russian who transports souls to the U.S., he determines to get it back. Who has he become? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A soul searching comedy.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for nudity and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Facebook Page

Country:

USA | France

Language:

English | Russian

Release Date:

5 May 2010 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Alma Perdida See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$63,302, 9 August 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$903,148, 8 November 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie opens with an onscreen quote that says: "The soul has its principal seat in the small gland located in the middle of the brain." -René Descartes, The Passions of the Soul, 1649. See more »

Goofs

Dmitri tells the actress not to worry that Paul's soul looks like and is the size of a chickpea, telling her that Al Pacino won three Oscars. Al Pacino has actually only won one Oscar (Best Actor in 1992, Scent of a Woman). See more »

Quotes

Dr. Flintstein: Well, when you have a tumour, you get rid of it. A twisted soul is like a tumour. It's better to get rid of it.
Giamatti - Paul: I don't think that my soul is twisted. Doctor.
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Connections

References Scarface (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Potsilunok
Written by Lubko Futorski, Oleh Sook, Roman Chayka, Yuriy Chopyk, Viktor Neborok
Performed by Mertvyj Piven
Published by Galrecords / Art-Agency Dzyga
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User Reviews

 
Different and interesting.
27 November 2009 | by Troy_CampbellSee all my reviews

Despite being easily recognizable, majority of movie-goers can't put a name to Paul Giamatti's face. His resume includes familiar films such as Saving Private Ryan, Cinderella Man, Donnie Brasco, The Truman Show, The Negotiator, Man on the Moon, My Best Friend's Wedding, The Illusionist, Planet of the Apes and this year's Duplicity. Then there are those lesser known films, that are arguably his best, like Shoot 'Em Up, Sideways and American Splendor. Cold Souls doesn't fit on either of those lists; it's too small to fit the former and not quite good enough to fit the latter.

It's hard not to keep the focus on Giamatti as here he actually plays himself, or at least a fabricated version of himself, which further adds to his enigmatic persona. The Paul Giamatti we see on screen is detached, withdrawn and filled with hopelessness. He seems to enjoy his obscurity yet yearns for more. How much does the real Giamatti have in common with this man? With a long line of sad sacks on his CV, is this art imitating life or life imitating art? One of the real treats with Cold Souls is you'll never know.

Writing and directing, Sophie Barthes has crafted a neat little Charlie Kaufman-esquire tale, although it becomes too self-knowing and important in parts. When she dabbles in dark humour it really steps up with the deadpan repartee between Giamatti and the equally ambiguous David Strathairn worth the price of admission alone. However, the subplot involving Russian soul-traffickers is boring and unwelcome. Barthes also deals with the futuristic concept cleverly; in this world it seems completely natural and it is not required to take a massive leap of faith for it to work.

A different and interesting, if not excellent, picture that is an ideal watch on DVD.

3.5 out of 5 (1 - Rubbish, 2 - Ordinary, 3 - Good, 4 - Excellent, 5 - Classic)


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