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The Fundamentals of Caring (2016)

TV-MA | | Comedy, Drama | 24 June 2016 (USA)
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2:27 | Trailer
A man suffering an incredible amount of loss enrolls in a class about care-giving that changes his perspective on life.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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991 ( 90)
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Jodi
...
Caregiving Instructor
...
Ben Benjamin
...
Janet
...
Elsa
...
Trevor
...
Cute Travel Channel Girl
Matthew Pruitt ...
TV Reporter
...
Courier
...
Dot
Bill Murphey ...
Mike
...
Eric Singer ...
James Donadio ...
Waiter
...
Peaches
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Storyline

A writer (Paul Rudd) retires after a personal tragedy and becomes a disabled teen's caregiver. When the two embark on an impromptu road trip, their ability to cope is tested as they start to understand the importance of hope and friendship.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Caring is a funny thing.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

24 June 2016 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Altruisti si diventa  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The book's title is "The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving". They made it shorter for the film adaptation. See more »

Goofs

After Dot and her father talked at the Deepest Pit, Ben called Dot's father "Cash", which at that time he wasn't supposed to know because he hadn't have the chance to ask Dot's father's name and couldn't have heard Dot and her father's conversation. See more »

Quotes

Peaches: What's it like being a parent?
Ben: Every corny thing you've heard about having a kid is completely and utterly true... It's the only reason we're here.
See more »

Soundtracks

Take Me As I Am
Written by Heather Anne D'Angelo, Erika Spring Forster and Annie Hart
Performed by Au Revoir Simone
Courtesy of Our Secret Record Company
By Arrangement with Lip Sync Music Inc.
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User Reviews

 
An Entertaining Comedy-Drama
13 July 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

When I read Netflix's synopsis about The Fundamentals of Caring, I did not expect much from the movie. Given the somber premise, I thought it to be an incredibly mushy, overly emotional film. I have to say the movie exceeded my expectations greatly.

First of all, The Fundamentals of Caring does well to avoid the tropes that one normally associates with the genre of the buddy comedy. It also pokes fun at the clichéd movie "disabled" person, one who is either larger than life or depressed with his life. What we get are two very original characters, Ben (played by Paul Rudd) and Trevor (played by Craig Roberts), who are just ordinary human beings.

As original and well-written Ben and Trevor's characters may be, Dot (played by Selena Gomez) is not at all well-developed throughout the movie's run. More than Ben, Dot is the character that inspires Trevor to push past his limits and jump over his self-imposed hurdles. Although this is a crucial part of the story, the character herself does not contribute much other than blank expressions and explicit dialogues. This is both a fault of Gomez and of the movie's writers, as the character could either have developed so much more throughout the movie, or she could have had a smaller role in the scope of the movie.

While the movie gets off to a strong start, it does not maintain this momentum as it progresses forward. It would have been beneficial for the writers to have stretched the movie's run-time in order to develop the climax more, as it felt incredibly rushed. While increasing the movie's run-time runs the risk of making the movie "too long," I find that a movie that is too short in length sabotages its chance of leaving a lasting impact on its audience.

Despite the flaws in the writing of the movie, I found that Paul Rudd and Craig Roberts were phenomenal as Ben and Trevor. Paul Rudd is normally known for his comic roles in movies like Anchorman and Antman. However, he manages to deliver a natural, sincere performance as Ben, a grief stricken caregiver. It is in the quiet, subtle moments of the movie that Rudd manages to convey Ben's suffering and what he's going through. It is these moments that demonstrate that Rudd has a great deal of acting range if it's channeled by his directors.

While I have been familiar with Rudd's work, I was not at all familiar with Craig Roberts' work. I recognized him from his small roles in 22 Jump Street and Neighbors (And I had no idea he was British!), but not much else. This movie definitely shows what he's capable of as an actor, and I hope it serves as a suitable launch pad for future roles in his career. His portrayal of Trevor definitely surpassed my expectations, as he gave the character a sense of humanity and avoided going for the clichés.

Overall, I would recommend The Fundamentals of Caring to anyone who appreciates a good comedy-drama. While the movie is not perfect, it features two leading actors who are at the top of their game.


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