Week Of 02.21.2021 Movie Reviews
Reviewing I Care A Lot, Breaking News In Yuba County, And Barb And Star Go To Vista Del Mar
Well the second part of the bizarre 2020-2021 Oscar season schedule is in full gear as more awards worthy films have been coming out in February. However we’re taking a light break from those films this weekend and hitting on three dark comedies involving ladies getting themselves into trouble - I Care A Lot, Breaking News In Yuba County, And Barb And Star Go To Vista Del Mar.
But first, a reminder of what my grading system for movies works like
- S Grade; 5.0 Stars: The Best Film I’ve Ever Seen, Everyone Has An S Graded Film
- A+/A- Grade; 4.0/4.5 Stars: One Of The Best Films Of The Year, If Not All-Time
- B+/B- Grade; 3.0/3.5 Stars: Worth A Trip To The Theatre For First Viewing
- C+/C- Grade; 2.0/2.5 Stars: Watch From Home For First Viewing
- D+/D- Grade; 1.0/1.5 Stars: Don’t Bother Watching This At All If You Can Help It
- F Grade; 0.5 Star: One Of The Worst Films Of All-Time
- Reminder: Reviews For These Films Can Change Over Time And Will Be Reflected Over At Our Letterboxd
With all that out of the way, lets get to the reviews already...
- The Plot: A court-appointed legal guardian defrauds her older clients and traps them under her care. But her latest mark comes with some unexpected baggage.
- My Review: Like PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN, this movie is a prime example of why I'm not personally crazy about the “She did that!” subgenre. Besides the hypocrisy of how this would be perceived were a man involved, this movie has an unlikable protagonist I was rooting against, an antagonist I was rooting for, and just felt like an all around mean sort of film. Don't get me wrong, it's well shot and acted, but good technical filmmaking isn't enough for me to ignore I hated the storytelling and that its never good to feel happy when a “good guy" character is off-ed onscreen. Like Promising though, the “f*ck you” ending left me sort of satisfied but also angry and feeling like the whole film was kind of pointless. Ultimately felt like this was where it belonged on Netflix, though were it not it might be worth the curious rental. C+ for I CARE A LOT.
- The Plot: An overlooked pencil-pusher catches her husband in bed with another woman, the shock of which causes him to die of a heart attack. So she buries his body and takes advantage of the growing celebrity status that comes from having a missing husband. But she quickly finds herself in over her head, dodging cops and criminals, all while trying to keep the truth from her sister, a local news anchor who’s desperate for a story.
- My Review: Now this feels like a better parody of shady women than I CARE A LOT, in that it actually makes the protagonist relatable and easy to be empathetic towards. The side characters are funny at times, and the actors portraying them are clearly having fun with being them. However, at the end of the day the movie is a bit over the top and starts to lose its mind in the third act as it offs characters like its triying to be a Tarantino film but not quite nailing the comedic violence. This is a prime example of a film to rent for a movie night for a little comedy. C+ for BREAKING NEWS IN YUBA COUNTY.
- The Plot: The story of best friends Barb and Star, who leave their small midwestern town for the first time to go on vacation in Vista Del Mar, Florida, where they soon find themselves tangled up in adventure, love, and a villain’s evil plot to kill everyone in town.
- My Review: This film is absolutely nuts in good ways at times. The mashing of several genres and tones all at once to turn a fairly by the numbers buddy gal comedy into an absolutely crazy spy thriller mixed with romance and over the top musical acts is something to behold. Its ambition and the way the entire cast buys in and has fun with a premise that loses its mind and knows it does is commendable. Particularly Kristen Wiig who has an amazing performance in also playing the villian of the film. That said…the over the top nuttiness is also one of my gripes with it. I laughed a few times, but the movie at the end of the day was perhaps just a tad too silly and over the top as a comedy for me. Overall I feel like this film would be a fun little movie night rental just like the other two films from this week. C+ for BARB AND STAR GO TO VISTA DEL MAR.