The 2011 film “Like Crazy” starring Felicity Jones and Anton Yelchin was a delightful slice of fluff that I saw with trepidation; because of the word “like”; robbed of its legitimacy by contemporary vernacular; bastardized, used as a verbal pause, conversations lengthened 50% by its ubiquitous repetition; car alarms, nails on a blackboard, sleeplessness are preferable to its resounding, droning, stupid, repetitious use. The protagonists in “Like Crazy” were intelligent, and even though they strayed from the script, “like” did not spew forth with every spoken thought.
“The Color Wheel” filmed in grainy black and white 16mm, indiscriminate year; follows a brother and sister over a weekend journey to collect her belongings from her teacher/lover; she was studying broadcast journalism. Alex Ross Perry and Carlen Altman co- wrote the script and portray the troubled brother and sister: “Colin” and “JR”.
Colin is nerdy, scrappily humorous; wry, slashing wit, masking a mountain of vulnerabilities; his disdainful, caustic treatment of his sister (shunned by her parents) adds pulp and flavor to the first half of the film. JR is moderately attractive; tastelessly dressed in sleazy, slutty guise; not a fragment, or a prayer of ever becoming even a “weather girl” on national TV. ( I harbor no angst against weather girls.)
The movie sinks miserably into a quagmire of “likedom” from the moment we meet the Professor/Teacher/Lover of JR. A Professor of Journalism who cannot complete a 10 –word- sentence without 5 “like’s”; was this irony on the part of the writers? The disease, “like” the Black Plague spreads from actor to actor, one excruciating scene after another; bombarding, crucifying, sacrificing anything worthwhile on the altar of one four- letter- word. The movie’s disturbingly 83 minutes, even with a reel change (first since childhood), easily reduced to 60 minutes with the elimination of —-!
The last scene, a monologue, immensely “like-infused” is potently problematic, traumatic, unsettling. But to save you emotionally and financially, will give you a “spoiler” on request!
ONE & 1/2 STARS!