The Reel Review

B-

Rosamund Pike stars in this Netflix crime thriller about a ruthless attorney who preys on the elderly. Wrangling corrupt doctors and nursing home owners, and a clueless judge, she obtains legal guardianship over those without families and bilks them of their life savings. She finally meets her match when her latest target (Dianne Wiest) turns out to have some very important (i.e. dangerous) connections.

Eiza González, Dianne Wiest and Rosamund Pike in I Care A Lot.

The story from writer/director J Blakeson (The Disappearance of Alice Creed, The 5th Wave) is intended to be an indictment of a system which allows predatory lawyers to take advantage of the elderly. Rosamund Pike, channeling the same level of villainy that scored her an Oscar nomination for 2014’s Gone Girl, is excellent at making viewers loathe the conniving, vape-addicted Marla Grayson. She is evil and seems unstoppable – a truly infuriating character.

And the first half of the film, with Eiza González (Baby Driver) as her girlfriend and co-hort and Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones) as the mobster son coming after them, is actually quite good, with some truly bizarre comic moments. Case in point: Dinklage’s henchman trying to rescue Wiest from the nursing home.

Peter Dinklage and Rosamund Pike in I Care A Lot.

The third act, however, is when I Care A Lot completely falls apart, veering down a wildly improbable path as it decides it is now a thriller. Between its uneven tone and just so many unbelievably bonkers plot twists, the story’s much stronger first half is diminished significantly. At least the ending is somewhat satisfying… even if by then you DON’T care a lot.

REEL FACTS

I Care A Lot marks Rosamund Pike’s third Golden Globe nomination – her other two were for 2014’s Gone Girl and 2018’s A Private War

• Rosamund Pike and Chris Messina have both been in adaptations of Gillian Flynn novels – Pike in 2014’s Gone Girl, and Messina in 2018’s HBO series Sharp Objects.

I Care a Lot was filmed in and around Boston, Massachusetts and at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire, England.

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