Deliciously dark new movie I Care A Lot is anything but caring, but it is lashings of fun.
Just pray Marla Grayson doesn’t knock on your door.
That’s just what happens to blissfully-ignorant senior Jennifer Peterson (Dianne Wiest) when Marla (Rosamund Pike) arrives as her new court-appointed guardian.
Problem is it’s all news to Jennifer who is happily retired in her expansive house until the devious, smiling Marla drags her off to a retirement home.
It’s all just another day’s work for Marla who has a first-grade racket in play with partner and girlfriend Fran (Eiza González). Jennifer is merely their latest sucker placed under lock, key and pills, allowing them to sell off her assets (did I mention the nursing staff kickbacks?).
But there’s one other complication: snappily-dressed mobster Roman Lunyov (Peter Dinklage) also has designs on Jennifer…. and he’s not happy. Suddenly the lioness becomes prey and it’s game on. The premise may sound simple, but the performances and direction by J. Blakeson (The Disappearance of Alice Creed, Gunpowder) deliver.
Rosamund Pike has already been nominated for a Golden Globe for her ruthless performance as Marla (I wouldn’t be surprised if she takes home the trophy). Hers could have passed for black comedy, but in Pike’s hands Marla is far more chilling as she manipulates all in her path, purring and sucking on her pen vaper.
Dianne Wiest steals her limited scenes, while Peter Dinklage is a perfectly-matched nemesis to Pike. The film also features Chris Messina as a lawyer who foolishly faces off with Marla.
As the ample plot develops things descend into a comedy of errors, spiked by stunts and twists. Blakeson’s script even deftly injects the odd emotional and poetic moments I won’t spoil.
One of the better features so far in 2021.
Friday 19 February on Amazon Prime Video.