The Fundamentals of Caring – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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A smart ass handicapped kid, as if there is any other kind, finds himself with a caregiver who is trying to get him out into the world. Yeah, it sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

TV Viewing

Trigger Warning(s):

Characters Worth Noting

Ben (Paul Rudd) | Trevor (Craig Roberts) | Dot [Dorothy] (Selena Gomez)

Main Storyline (with Commentary)

Ben has been having a hard time for years. His writing career went to hell, his son died years ago, he is dodging his wife who is trying to have him served for a divorce, and now he is a caregiver to Trevor – for $9 an hour. Mind you, Trevor is no walk in the park. He is your generic, I’m a handicap butthole until you really get to know me. But, to add some flavor to this situation, Trevor only has his mom, for his dad is not in the picture, and Trevor is a boy with routines. Not the usual kind dealing with drugs and exercise to extend his life, but waffles at a certain time with certain things, certain TV shows, and things of that nature. Which isn’t to make it seem the boy has OCD and freaks out breaking procedure, but it seems his mother has coddled him to the point where you almost are left wondering why is she keeping him alive? Not to sound mean but she isn’t really letting the boy live, much less pushing him to live. His sole time outside is going to the park once a week. Outside of that, there is no going to school, no support groups, just his mom, caretaker, and his doctor. That is his social circle.

Well, until Ben decides to tell Trevor off when Trevor starts to get a little too personal. Thus leading to a road trip, one which includes a girl named Dot who is Selena Gomez’s umpteenth attempt to seem more mature by cursing like a sailor. However, unlike some previous efforts to be taken more serious, I’d say she does show that when she isn’t the star but more so a supporting character, she can do a little something. Granted, there comes a point where you realize, even with a tad of backstory about her life, she is simply a love interest made to open Trevor’s mind a bit, but there might be potential.

As for why this is being labeled TV Viewing? Well, it is because, even with Trevor being funny, and slightly tragic, and Dot being likable, this movie doesn’t hit you hard. Yes, the ending damn near made me cry, but that is because Ben was playing with my emotions. Outside of that, the film is enjoyable but after sitting on this review for a week, I can barely remember it – meaning it really doesn’t leave much of an impact.

Review Summary


Craig Roberts as Trevor was the best part of the movie. Granted, Trevor was an ass, but Roberts was able to make you laugh with him, want to curse him out, and damn near make you cry. Something you don’t really feel from the other characters who also have issues.

Low Points

To me, neither Paul Rudd nor Gomez are at that point yet where they can tap into whatever dark moments have happened in their life and bring that to a character. Then, on top of that, use that darkness to create the type of pain you can feel. For despite what Ben has gone through, and the stuff Dot is working through, Roberts performance eclipses them both.

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About Amari Sali 2528 Articles
New Jersey native Amari Sali takes the approach of more so being a media advisor than a critic to sort of fill in the gap left between casual fans of media and those who review productions for a living. Thus being open about bias while still giving enough insight, often with spoilers, to present whether something is worth seeing, buying, renting, streaming, or checking out at all. An avid writer, Amari hopes to eventually switch from talking about other people's productions to fully working on his own. Such a dream is in progress to becoming reality.

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