I Care a Lot: Movie Review

It's pretty rare to see a film with two villains pitted against each other. As anticipated, we were slightly confused on who to root for as both our lead characters had serious moral issues on both fronts. It was as if there wasn't really any good outcome that we could see happening. It's going to be a lose-lose situation eitehr way. We consider this a minor hiccup though as the overall experience for "I Care a Lot" was actually quite fun and quite thought-provoking.
Marla Grayson (Rosamund Pike) is a con who hides behind the veil of guardianship - or taking care of old people who are unable to take care of themselves. In theory, this is about helping those who are in need but in practice, Marla has found a way to "game" the system. Instead of helping, she locks away the elderly in assisted homes cutting them off from the outside world. She then sells off their properties and assets for her own profit. Marla is presented with a golden opportunity as she finds out about Jennifer Peterson (Dianne Wiest) - an old lady who is rich, without debt, without a criminal record and best of all, without family. Marla is able to be her guardian easily but soon Marla receives threats and finds out that Jennifer Peterson may not be who she claims to be. Has Marla bitten off more than she chew this time?
We still vividly remember Rosamund Pike's outstanding performance in "Gone Girl". And we couldn't stop comparing her performance in "I Care a Lot" with that film. That's not a bad thing as she matches her devilish and devious persona in "Gone Girl" here. In fact, she impressed us even better this time as Pike was easily the best thing that we could attach to "I Care a Lot". Her looks, her performance and her bravado was well-suited with the manipulative character of Marla Grayson. It was so effective that we hated her character and we simply couldn't root for her most of the way even when the film was trying hard to push her character to become more like a protagonist. Her evil ways and twisted mentality was just too much that instead we felt like that whatever came her way, even if it means her death, she outright deserved it. And that is the probably the biggest issue we had the film. There was simply no clear way to root for anyone in "I Care a Lot" and in fact, we were finding ourselves rooting more for Jennifer Peterson or even the character of Peter Dinklage instead - however dark their characters may have been. The way the film ended was no surprise but better than anticipated given the circumstances of having no morally good lead characters. The film has this girl power push which we felt was awkwardly placed as most of these girl power situations also meant doing some evil deed in return. As a thriller film, this was actually fun and we recommend giving this a shot. But the deeper issues with its writing and the way it presented the morality of our characters was just too imbalanced at the end of the day to let go off.
Rating: 3 and a half reels

Why you should watch it:
- highly-entertaining and fun even with its faults

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- a protagonist you'd be hard-pressed and forced to like and root for

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