‘Breaking Information in Yuba County’ evaluation: Allison Janney stars

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“Breaking Information in Yuba County” appears to be a stab at darkish comedy, an ensemble crime romp commenting by way of sideswipe on TV information and the lust for fame. It’s exhausting to inform.

Sue (Allison Janney), determined to be seen by somebody — anybody — clings to a shell of a wedding and is virtually a human bootprint, the best way everybody steps on her. When her philandering husband dies in flagrante delicto, she hides the physique and concocts a narrative to get some candy, candy consideration. Why does she disguise the physique? I don’t know. Go together with it. Thankfully, her sister Nancy (Mila Kunis) is a neighborhood, scoop-hungry TV reporter whom Sue can use to get her pantomime rolling. Among the many characters performed by seemingly limitless acquainted faces are precise unhealthy guys whose schemes involving the husband are thwarted by his disappearance, and his brother, who’s making an attempt to go straight and begin a household together with his fiancée. There’s additionally a dogged cop who threatens to unravel the thinly assembled tapestry whereas voracious Sue pushes for the next and better media profile.

It’s a comedy, or so insists the music.

It’s additionally a kind of casts the place not understanding who’ll present up subsequent is a part of the enjoyable, so that you may skip the remainder of this paragraph if you wish to play alongside. Aside from Janney and Kunis are: Matthew Modine, Jimmi Simpson, Samira Wiley, Wanda Sykes, Ellen Barkin, Keong Sim, Clifton Collins Jr., Awkwafina, Juliette Lewis (the second Lewis sighting this week, as she additionally seems in “Music”) and Regina Corridor.

Whew.

Sadly, even solely watchable actors are wasted when character improvement isn’t on the movie’s to-do listing. Individuals are moved round like recreation items; typically they die. It’s no enjoyable when characters performed by actors you take pleasure in seeing chew the mud, nevertheless it additionally doesn’t precisely break your coronary heart.

It’s a kind of post-“Pulp Fiction” ensemble crime frolics that fails to seize that basic’s uniqueness and spark. It feels compelled, regardless of such a solid. Awkwafina in all probability acquits herself finest among the many superstar lots, nevertheless it’s a foul signal when performers as gifted as Sykes or Corridor or Janney (as an example) don’t emerge with memorable moments. Director Tate Taylor (“The Assist”) has labored ceaselessly with Janney, which explains how she was snared.

One wonders what may need been had Amanda Idoko’s script not been directed at such a pitch, with “Bear in mind, that is humorous” music cues doing an excessive amount of work in seemingly each scene. It’s exhausting.

That it’s referred to as “Breaking Information” implies Sue’s tv appearances are meant as commentary; what that remark may be escapes.

It’s exhausting to pinpoint any laugh-out-loud moments within the “comedy.” But when issues flip graphically violent, we haven’t invested sufficient within the characters, nor are the proceedings captured expertly sufficient, for them to have discernible affect.

“Breaking Information in Yuba County” lacks each the shape and substance to money in on its performing property.

‘Breaking Information in Yuba County’

Rated: R, for violence, sexual content material, language and a few nudity

Working time: 1 hour, 36 minutes

Taking part in: Out there on digital and in restricted launch the place theaters are open

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