TRIBECA: ‘A Case of You’ and ‘The English Teacher’

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a-case-of-you-bannerA Case of You (★★½)

TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL: Where the romantic comedy A Case of You, starring Justin Long and Evan Rachel Wood, succeeds is ultimately where it missteps. Directed Kat Coiro assembles a terrific cast including the underutilized Sam Rockwell and extremely memorable Peter Dinklage, however, the screenplay that is co-written by Long along with brother Christian and Keir O’Donnell doesn’t have a true sense of identity. Tells the story of a young man who thinks he’s met the girl of his dreams and attempts to court her by all interests and statuses from her Facebook page.

In an era where social media is prevalent and dating becomes the new norm via a tweet or a poke, the story rings true in many ways. However, the misguided title and evolution of events don’t exactly scream fresh and unique. Coiro manages some very funny moments and gets some decent outcomes from some of the cast particularly Evan Rachel Wood and Peter Dinklage. In its short running time, the film doesn’t exactly feel smooth and polished in the way a comedy needs to be.

With all the obvious flaws, A Case of You is still very entertaining and enjoyable.  Sam Rockwell is memorable in his few moments on-screen along with Vince Vaughn and Brendan Fraser.  Check it out when you can.

the-english-teacher-julianne-mooreThe English Teacher (★★)

TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL: Anyone who knows me, or simply follows my Oscar predictions on a yearly basis, knows that I’m highly anticipating the hopeful moment that three-time Academy Award nominee Julianne Moore wins her long deserved Oscar. Last year, my year in advanced predictions had Moore at the top of the Best Actress heap for Craig Zisk’s The English Teacher. At the time, little was known about it and I was operating on a wing and a prayer for than actual analysis. The film was pushed back and had its showing on Video and Demand as well as the Tribeca Film Festival. Essentially, the hope remains for another project. The English Teacher is a cheap farce of comedy taking unrealistic behaviors and unbelievable dialogue from its principal cast. Julianne Moore, as always, rises above anything that is going on around her. Beautifully elegant and dives head first into a character poorly structured and overtly misguided. Nonetheless, you can take her to bank every time.

What the film manages to do is highlight the beauty of Lily Collins to the utmost extreme and once again, put the undervalued Greg Kinnear in a role that offers him no strength or room to move. And don’t get me started on the ending that scribes Dan Chariton and Stacy Chariton put together. Cheap, under thought, and gives the audience no credit in the process and procedures of teaching, acting, and romance. Nathan Lane is nearly boiled over in his awkward role while Michael Angarano is merely passable.

Unfortunately, The English Teacher is a miss on most counts. Julianne Moore is your reason to watch.

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Clayton Davis is the esteemed Editor and Owner of AwardsCircuit.com. Born in Bronx, NY to a Puerto Rican mother and Black father, he’s been criticizing film and television for over a decade. Clayton is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association where he votes and attends the kick off to the awards season, the Critics Choice Awards. He also founded the Latino Entertainment Journalists Association, the first Latino-based critics’ organization in the United States. He’s also an active member of the African-American Film Critics Association, New York Film Critics Online, International Press Academy, Black Reel Awards, and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association. Clayton has been quoted and appeared in various outlets that include The New York Times, CNN.com, Variety, Deadline, Los Angeles Times, FOX 5, Bloomberg Television, AOL, Huffington Post, Bloomberg Radio, The Wrap, Slash Film, and the Hollywood Reporter.