Movie Review: I Care a Lot


Graphic by Tanatswa Chivero.

Netflix original,I Care A Lot, starring Rosamund Pike and Peter Dinklage was released on Feb 19. In a single weekend, this film received a worthy audience rating of 1.8 stars on Google. 

The film opens by introducing Marla Grayson, (Rosamund Pike) a corrupt guardian who entraps elderly people and seizes their assets for profit under the false claims that they cannot take care of themselves. 

Immediately after the movie begins, the audience cannot stand Marla. She is a lying, self-righteous and sociopathic woman who brings her vape into the courtroom. Marla gets a tip from her corrupt doctor associate on an old wealthy old woman, Jennifer Peterson (Dianne Wiest) with no children– the perfect candidate for Marla’s entrapment plans. She secures the woman in one of her nursing home facilities, but little does she know, the woman has a secret Russian-mob boss son, Roman Lunyov, (Peter Dinklage). Already, the film is shaping up to be a satisfying revenge story, “Marla Gray murdered after she messed with the wrong grandma.” Then things take a turn.

Lunyov sends a lawyer, (Chris Messina) to offer Grayson $250,000 to set his mother free. Marla refuses, and Lunyov sends an uncoordinated, unsuccessful, team of thugs to break Mrs. Peterson free. The scene ends with Grayson and her girlfriend taking the men into custody with unrealistic effortlessness. 

Marla realizes that there is more than meets the eye to the woman she has in custody when she discovers that Jennifer Peterson is the name of a dead child.  When she goes to question the old woman, they have a witty, funny debate. Dianne Wiest is a good actor and fills her role well. This was my favorite scene in the whole movie. However, I was disappointed that the directors only made use of Wiest’s acting skills in this singular scene, which, frankly, feels like a waste. 

After his first two plans have failed, Lunyov captures Marla and tries to kill her by running her car off the road into a lake. Lunyov leaves, not knowing Marla has escaped. I found this completely ridiculous. Why on earth would some mafioso bother to take the legal route in anything? If Lunyov’s entire profession is illegal, why does he all of a sudden care about the rules? 

If audience members did not already have a problem with this “dark crime thriller,” they do now. Marla is painted as the good guy, a lone hero defending herself from organized crime to keep her humble business afloat. Somewhere in the director’s mind, they thought that it was okay to idolize this human dirt stain whose sole purpose in life is to steal from the elderly. 

What’s more depressing to me than the fact that the directors didn’t see or didn’t care that they were putting this despicable human on a pedestal, was that the cast, cinematography, and production quality were all quite impressive. Someone took the time and money to make this look and feel like a quality movie, without taking into any consideration the plot or misguided representations in the movie.