Monday, June 17, 2019

The Fundamentals of Caring (2016)

Movie Name/Year: The Fundamentals of Caring (2016)
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Length: 97 minutes
Rating: TV-MA
Production/Distribution: Levantine Films, Worldwide Pants, Netflix
Director: Rob Burnett
Writer: Rob Burnett, Jonathan Evison
Actors: Craig Roberts, Paul Rudd, Jennifer Ehle, Selena Gomez, Megan Ferguson, Alex Huff, Donna Biscoe, Julia Denton, Ashley White, Matthew Pruitt, Alan Boell, Bill Murphy, Samantha Huskey, Frederick Weller, Bobby Cannavale

Blurb from IMDb: A man suffering a family loss enrolls in a class about care-giving that changes his perspective on life.

Selina’s Point of View:
To be honest, I normally find films that revolve around a handicapped character tend to be pretty exploitive. They’re usually emotionally manipulative and paint the characters as sad sacks. More often than not, the only stand-out trait of the main character in those films is that they’re handicapped. There’s rarely a depth or personality included.

In the beginning, I thought The Fundamentals of Caring would walk the same path, but I didn’t think that for long.

The main character had more personality than most people I meet in a year.

There was a lot of comedy in this movie, but it was very dark. Personally, I enjoy dark humor quite a bit, but I can understand why others wouldn’t. This film just happened to hit the bullseye on my funny bone. It’s that sarcastic attitude that does it, I think.

Craig Roberts (Tolkien, Kill Your Friends, 22 Jump Street) did a fantastic job. I loved his comedic timing, though there were a few times I saw him almost lose his fa├žade and start laughing. Of course, he was acting opposite Paul Rudd (Avengers: Endgame, Mute, The Little Prince). I imagine it’s difficult for most actors to keep their composure across from Rudd.

On top of all that, The Fundamentals of Caring subverted my expectation. I was SURE I knew EXACTLY what would happen from the start. The creators knew that’s how the audience would feel and used that knowledge expertly. They used the trope in order to lure viewers into a certain mindset and then flipped it around. It was gorgeous.

I’d highly recommend The Fundamentals of Caring, but it won’t be for everyone. The humor is so dark that many people may just find it distasteful. Go into this one knowing what you’re getting yourself into.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 77%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 83%
Metascore – 55/100
Metacritic User Score – 8.2/10
IMDB Score – 7.3/10
CinemaScore – None

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating5/5

Movie Trailer:

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