Crazy, Stupid, Love Film Review - A Summer's Delight



Introducing a smash hit flick for the summer writer Dan Fogelman releases romantic-comedy Crazy, Stupid, Love as an enigma of love. The stellar cast manages to encapsulate the comical, wild, & enchantment of this mystery called ‘life.’  The opening scene drops a bombshell while the married couple Cal Weaver (Steve Carell) and Emily Weaver (Julianne Moore) is out having dinner and the wife reveals to Cal that she wants a divorce. Cal is in utter shock. He has become the comfortably dull middle-age husband who has lost his mojo and appears to be unaware of his wife’s unhappiness. During the car ride home Emily attempts to explain her reason for cheating and why she wants a divorce. She is unsuccessful in getting a verbal response from Cal but instead he opts to jump from their moving car.

Cal drifts into a pitiful state of being, moves into his own apartment and starts going to bars telling anyone who will listen his sob story about getting divorced and how his wife cheated on him with David Lindhagen (Kevin Bacon).  After countless nights of Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling) witnessing Cal’s self-pity tirade he offers to school him on “how to get your manhood back” & ultimately become a player.  Initially, Cal is a little resistant but eventually agrees to get a makeover. Steve Carell gives a superb portrayal of being the defunct forty-something husband.

The transformation of Carell begins with Gosling taking him wardrobe shopping. Cal is skeptical about the outfits and high prices. At one point, Jacob blurts out “be better than the Gap” to the fashion victim. There is a sense of sheer joy mixed with amusement in witnessing the cocky good-looking womanizer unveiling Cal’s flaws. After being thoroughly coached by Jacob, Cal is ready to begin dating and get laid. The first night Weaver tries to pick up a lady from the bar proves to be his hardest. He later becomes a pro and follows into the footsteps of Jacob. However, there is one problem Cal still loves Emily and that void is unable to be filled. The couple is reunited at their son Robbie Weaver's (Jonah Bobo) parent teacher conference. Awkward moments arise when the teacher turns out to be Cal’s first one night stand. The wife becomes noticeably upset when she makes a connection between the two.

Robbie confides in his dad about a love interest he has with an older woman. The 13-year-old, teenager seems hell bent on winning the affecting of the 17-year-old Jessica Riley (Analeigh Tipton), the family babysitter who has no interest in the pre-teen. Robbie is convinced that Jessica is his soul mate.  As time passes, Cal realizes all hope is not lost when he receives a call from Emily asking him to take her through the steps to restart the pilot light from the water heater in the basement. Emily is visible in the kitchen window and is unaware that Cal can see her because he is in the backyard. Later, Cal and the kids recreate a miniature golf setting at the house to remind Emily of their first date. His daughter Hannah Weaver (Emma Stone), a law student, Jacob and her new boyfriend stop by unannounced. Cal is pleasantly surprised to see his daughter but is shocked to see Jacob with her. Jacob had been distancing himself from Cal and ‘the bar scene’ because of his recent interest in Hannah. He had no idea this special woman in Jacob’s life would be his daughter.  Cal does not approve and forbids his daughter to see the man. The irony of the situation is bittersweet. The self-proclaimed philanderer who taught him how to be a player is now professing his undying love for his daughter.  Ryan Gosling who is best known for his role in The Notebook delivers a wickedly funny performance showcasing his far-reaching talents.

Cal is adamant about not accepting Jacob as his daughter’s boyfriend. He tells him “you will never be good enough for her.” The final scene concludes at Robbie’s 8th grade graduation. The son gives a salutatorian speech which gets sidetracked by his thoughts about his doubts on soul mates.  His father interrupts his speech and recounts his love for Emily. There is a renewed sense of hope in the air. Cal and Emily exchange words at the graduation and there is an indication of a possible reconciliation. Robbie once more proclaims his love for Jessica and is optimistic that she will reciprocate his love one day. The film is filled with clever quotes and numerous breathtaking moments. Crazy, Stupid, Love hits home giving you a great mix of funny, witty, charm, and  true-life.

Directed by John Requa and Glen Ficarra, Crazy, Stupid, Love stars Steve CarellJulianne Moore, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, and Kevin Bacon

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