REVIEW: ‘I Care a Lot’ crumbles due to poor writing

Sometimes there are pieces of media that just try way too hard to be edgy. “I Care a Lot” definitely joins that club.

Rosamund Pike stars as Marla Grayson in “I Care a Lot,” a woman who’s made a career as a legal guardian for the elderly. As part of her job, Grayson will get a notice from a doctor she works with stating that an elderly person can no longer live on her own, which she brings to a court.

In turn, the court will then grant legal guardianship to Grayson, allowing her to determine the care for the elderly person, which results in her putting them in an assisted living facility. It also means she has access to the elderly individual’s finances. The latest individual she decides to get legal guardianship over, Jennifer Peterson (Diane Wiest), though, just happens to have a significant connection to Russian mob boss Roman Lunyov (Peter Dinklage).

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REVIEW: ‘Promising Young Woman’ is pinnacle revenge filmmaking

Some take vengeance in a swift manner, while others take the long approach with a more calculated plan.

“Promising Young Woman” is about the latter, and it makes for one of 2020’s best films.

Cassandra is the main character of the movie, and is portrayed by Carey Mulligan. A medical school dropout, Cassandra lives at home with her parents and works at a quaint coffee shop. By night, though, she plays a different role. Her evenings are spent in clubs, where she pretends to be drunk until a sleazy guy decides to take her to their home. Once there, she reveals that she’s actually sober and revels in their guilt.

By the start of the film, Cassandra seems to have been doing this for a while. Her drive is the memory of her friend, who was raped in college and also dropped out before passing away. As the first act gets underway, Cassandra discovers ways she can get back directly at those who wronged her friend, as well as those who didn’t listen to her story after. At the same time, she also reconnects with another old friend from med school.

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REVIEW: ‘Black Bear’ is a fascinating breach into the creative mind

To be honest, Aubrey Plaza really upstaged the bear in this movie.

In all seriousness, Plaza is the star of “Black Bear,” a film directed by Lawrence Michael Levine. Plaza portrays Allison, an actress-turned-director who’s staying at a lake house to escape the world and get some work done on a new project.

While she’s there, she meets the owners of the home, Blair (Sarah Gadon) and Gabe (Christopher Abbott). Her stay over the course of the picture goes through dramatic twists and turns that explore elements of a creative mind.

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REVIEW: ‘Palm Springs’ is a superb time loop comedy

The “Groundhog Day” formula just works. It worked in that movie. It worked in “Happy Death Day.” And it works here in “Palm Springs.”

The new flick, available from Hulu, stars Cristin Milioti as Sarah, a woman who’s the Maid of Honor at her sister’s wedding. While it’s usually a time of celebration, though, Sarah isn’t having a great time. That is until she meets Nyles (Andy Samberg), a free spirited guy who’s also a guest at the wedding.

The two hit it off that night and things seem to be going well. However, through a series of events, Sarah follows Nyles into a cave and wakes up on the day of her sister’s wedding again. After this happens a few more times, Sarah realizes she’s in a time-loop, and Nyles happens to be stuck in that loop, too. While she initially hates it, Sarah soon becomes accustomed to the cycle and eventually begins having fun hanging out with Nyles on a daily basis, with all of those days being the same.

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REVIEW: ‘International Falls’ is a strong, amusing look at a stark situation

This small Minnesota city on the Canadian border has a few claims to fame. It was the inspiration for Frostbite Falls in Rocky and Bullwinkle, it’s officially known as the Icebox of the Nation for its cold temperatures, the high school hockey team has a rich history winning seven state titles and it was the home of National Football League legend Bronko Nagurski.

I can’t say I was ever really expecting my hometown to be the setting for a motion picture, though. Yes, before leaving for college, the setting of this dramatic comedy was where I was born and raised.

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REVIEW: ‘Downhill’ enjoyable thanks to mix of drama, dark comedy

“Downhill,” aka, “Marriage Story: On Ice.”

This movie taking place at a ski resort in Austria follows a family of four on vacation. The family includes the parents Billie (Julia Louis Dreyfus) and Pete (Will Ferrell), and their two sons Finn (Julian Grey) and Emerson (Ammon Jacob Ford). The family appears to have some stress from vacation traveling, but seem to be ready for a pleasant trip in Europe.

However, the situation gets rocky when a controlled avalanche to provide more snow on the slopes causes a sequence of events that results in a rift between the married couple. The rest of the trip explores their drama as they navigate the rest of their vacation.

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REVIEW: Underneath the glitz and glamour, ‘The Gentlemen’ is empty

Few movies get as smug and full of itself as director Guy Ritchie’s new feature “The Gentlemen.”

The movie stars Matthew McConaughey as Mickey Pearson. Mickey is the kingpin of a crime organization that grows marijuana in the United Kingdom on land owned by wealthy British citizens. After building his empire up, though, Mickey is looking to get out of the “business” and settle down.

To do so, Mickey is holding meetings with Matthew (Jeremy Strong), a wealthy interested party. However, one night, a tabloid journalist named Fletcher (Hugh Grant) introduces information to Mickey’s right hand man Ray (Charlie Hunnam) that could throw a wrench in the situation.

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Best of the Decade: Comedy

This is a series called “Best of the Decade.” It’s a list including 10 movies that I found to be the best in a specific genre from 2010-2019.

Whether they were based on TV shows or real life experiences, the past decade provided audiences with a good deal of laughs. Here are my favorite funny flicks from the 2010s.

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REVIEW: ‘Ready or Not’ is a fun way to end summer 2019

Before this movie whenever I heard the phrase “Ready or Not” I thought of the Fugees song. Now, I might think of a very bloody wedding reception.

“Ready or Not” follows the character Grace, played by Samara Weaving, on her wedding day. While nerves are nothing new for a person on their wedding day, Grace is having a bit more anxiety than usual because she happens to be marrying into a massively wealthy family.

She’s calmed down a bit, though, by her fiance Alex (Mark O’Brien) and her new family, who provide pleasantries and reassurance. That is until it comes time for the family tradition of having a game at midnight. The family decides to play a game of Hide and Seek, with Grace being the person to hide. At first Grace just thinks it’s a silly quirk, until it turns out the family is actually hunting her as part of a sacrificial ritual. As a result, Grace’s wedding night turns into a fight for survival.

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REVIEW: ‘Bernadette’s’ mystery isn’t worth checking out

Director Richard Linklater is a great talent in the film industry. The “Before Sunrise” trilogy, “Boyhood,” 2011’s “Bernie” and even 2017’s “Last Flag Flying,” have all been solid entries to his filmography in this reviewer’s opinion.

However, when it comes to “Where’d You Go, Bernadette,” the filmmaker, along with the cast and crew, drop the ball.

Bernadette, played by Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett, is a retired architect who now spends most of her time trying to restore the home where her family now resides. Her leaving the industry, though, has led to her enjoying life less and less, and it doesn’t help that she’s not exactly sociable.

The latter is especially portrayed by her having a bad relationships with other women in her neighborhood and her marriage becoming strained. As the movie progresses, these stress factors eventually become to much and Bernadette ends up leaving to pursue a sort of self discovery journey. By itself that’s not a particularly bad thing, except she doesn’t end up telling anybody.

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