Published on February 24th, 2012 | by Emmanuel Stratford0
REVIEW: Crazy Stupid Love
Summary: This dramedy about a marriage break up is a bittersweet story which will make you laugh an cry in equal measure
Cal (Steve Carell) and Emily (Julianne Moore) have been married for over 20 years but when Cal learns that Emily had an affair he moves out. He heads to a bar to forget about her but whines about what happened. Jacob (Ryan Gosling), a regular at the bar, hears his woes and offers to help him. He gives him a makeover and teachs him how to be a player. It isn’t long before he’s picking up someone frequently but eventually realises he still loves Emily and wishes he could go back. Jacob also gets a new outlook when he starts to feel something about a Hannah (Emma Stone), who he tried to pick up but she turned him down because she had a boyfriend.
This is a fantastic feel good movie, with great writing, stunning performances and genuine emotion which is sadly lacking in most Hollywood fare these days. Right from the get go, you’re right there on Cal’s journey, through the highs and lows, he starts off being a one note character but he gradually grows on you. The film builds with some stunning comedy, both verbal and visual gags, and concludes in a hilarious family get together which will have you in stitches.
Directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, whose only other offering is ‘I Love You Phillip Morris’ which is another hilarious film, give the film a look which pops off the screen with vibrant colours. They tackle the subject matter with aplomb and all of this makes it there most mainstream film while staying with their sensibilities.
The cast are on flying form, Steve Carell shows that leaving the US Office wasn’t a bad idea at all while Julianne Moore can do no wrong, both of them deserve some awards recognition for their roles. Ryan Gosling shows that he can pretty much play any character you throw at him and that he also has a flair for comedy, can he do anything wrong? Emma Stone continues the charm offence on audiences and is definitely someone to watch as she’ll only get better as the years go on. Kevin Bacon also pops up in a cameo role but gives just enough of a sleazy role enough punch to be memorable.
It’s a shame this movie didn’t get much love when the awards season came around as it is truly one of the best films of last year. If you haven’t seen this yet then you owe it to yourself to check it out, pronto.
‘Crazy Stupid Love’ looks smooth as silk on Blu-ray. The transfer from Warner is struck from a pristine print, with no specks, marks, or scratches marring the viewing experience. A faint amount of grain adds texture and warmth to the image, but never interferes with clarity. Contrast is well pitched and colours are lush and nicely saturated without appearing artificial. Flesh tones look natural and stable throughout, and close-ups highlight fine facial details well. Blacks are rich, inky, and rock solid, yet even in the dark, dingy bar scenes crush is never an issue, nor is digital noise. Even better, no banding, edge enhancement, or noise reduction distracts from the picture’s overall crispness and sheen, which goes a long way toward drawing us in and making the action more intimate. Though the image never really dazzles, this is a high-quality, easy-on-the-eyes effort that perfectly suits the film.
A full-bodied DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track accompanies the movie and, for the most part, provides clear, well-modulated sound. There aren’t a lot of complex effects jockeying for attention, but the straightforward elements come across well. Some gentle atmospherics bleed into the rear speakers to provide a subtle surround feel, and the various soundtrack tunes possess excellent fidelity and dynamic range. The mix is generally well balanced, with the clatter and cacophony of the bar scenes never overwhelming the character interactions, although at times the heavy bass frequencies add too much weight to vocal timbres, making certain conversations a tad difficult to understand. On the whole, though, dialogue is nicely prioritized, and various background accents and fine details are distinct.
Featurette: “Steve and Ryan Walk Into a Bar” – An amiable but dopey bit of drivel in which Carell and Gosling sit on the bar set and banter with each other, interjecting comments about their co-stars, their respective characters, and the on-set atmosphere.
Featurette: “The Player Meets His Match” – Another fluffy EPK that focuses on the characters played by Gosling and Stone – their relationship, chemistry, and personalities – with a liberal amount of film clips sprinkled in.
Deleted Scenes – Fourteen deleted scenes, including an alternate ending, are included. Some possess a bit more gravitas than others, but all were well left on the cutting room floor.
This is a lovely film which will just make you feel great inside, it’s funny, quirky and will leave you with a smile a mile wide. It has likeable characters, interesting plot turns and a wit which is missing from a lot of romantic comedies these days, worth a look.
‘Crazy Stupid Love’ is out to rent or buy on DVD and Blu-Ray now.