Quick recap: I love trailers, all of the stories have already been told. And when all of the stories have been told, the best you could possibly hope for is that someone tells you the same story well. Maybe with a couple of new details, maybe from a different perspective, maybe ignoring the constraints of the genre in order to bring some brilliantly terrifying or terrifying brilliant version of the same story. One of the trailers below does that. The other, not so much.
So let’s start with the bad.
I’m sorry, Paul Rudd, I’m sure you are thoroughly charming in The Fundamentals Of Caring. You’re Paul Rudd, it’s what you do. But the trailer is boring as shit. There isn’t enough new stuff to make it interesting. Middle-aged guy who can’t accept his divorce, wise beyond his years disabled youth, bad-girl-with-a-heart-of-gold love interest, cross-country road trip. Is it that the kid said “blowjob”? Does that qualify as writing something new and interesting? It’s not that I believe that anything about the movie is poorly done or that there isn’t some insight and weight to the story. It’s just wholly uncompelling. As I watched that trailer, I thought “Eh, maybe I’ll watch it when it’s on Netflix. Oh wait, it’s a Netflix Original? Maybe I’ll put it on as I fall asleep.” Do you want to be the story that people fall asleep to? Didn’t think so. Don’t be that movie.
Maybe try to be this movie instead.
What the hell? And I mean that in the best possibly way. As in what the hell is this movie really about? You could maybe posit Billy Elliot with a black girl instead of British boy, but that seems to ignore the difference in tone and theme. Billy Elliot was significantly more joyous about its main character finding his passion and place. Why does The Fits have the horror movie music? And what appears to be one of the girls having a fit? Is this a coming of age story set against a predominately black, all girl dance troupe, or a supernatural horror film? Or is it both? Because it seems a hell of a lot like they managed to make it both.
Which is not to say that The Fits will necessarily be a great movie. It’s entirely possibly that The Fundamentals of Caring will be great despite its boring as hell trailer, and The Fits will be a total shit show. But at least The Fits will have failed at trying something interesting.