OPINION: ‘A Good Person’ interesting enough on the backs of lead actors


Photo courtesy of IMP Awards

If your childhood was anything like mine, it means you spent your sick days in elementary school watching midday reruns of the medical comedy “Scrubs” on Comedy Central. This is how I was introduced to Zach Braff and until about three months ago, I was largely unaware he had really done anything else.

The spark for this newfound Braff lore was an Instagram story from Florence Pugh about a new movie, starring her and directed by Zach Braff, “A Good Person.”

The movie is engaging enough but snags a few times in the middle. I don’t know if the story had too much going on but everything was interconnected enough that it was easy to keep track of.

Pugh plays Allison, a woman who is involved in a fatal car accident and, as a result, becomes addicted to oxycontin. Most of the movie surrounds her journey to realizing that she is an addict and getting help from an unlikely source, her would-have-been father-in-law.

Despite being a huge fan, I’ve never seen Pugh on the big screen until now, and man, does it make all the difference in experiencing her tactful and emotional style of acting.

Allison’s helping hand, Danny, is 10 years sober and played by Morgan Freeman. They both seem like actors who really know how to step on the gas pedal and go from zero to 100 at the drop of a hat.

The climax of Allie’s addiction endangers Danny’s granddaughter and causes him to relapse back into his alcoholism for one night. Danny lets go and finally reveals to Allie that the car accident, which until this point everyone insisted was the fault of a construction truck, was really Allie’s fault after all.

Allie is in a cocaine-induced stupor while taking in this information and Pugh pushes through the numbness to full-blown, raging sadness.

The film straddles the dramedy line extraordinarily well. One genre never overtakes the other and blends exactly how they should.

“A Good Person” ultimately questions guilt, grief, and the nonlinear road between addiction and recovery. If you are sensitive to drug abuse or have a complex relationship with a parental figure, beware when watching this one.