One of the best Rom-Coms you’ll ever see.
The film begins with Emily (Julianne Moore) requesting a divorce from Cal (Steve Carell) as she has fallen out of love with him and slept with someone else, which is understandably a strange way to start a rom com. However, it sets up the rather dry comedy and the emotional themes surrounding family, divorce and the tougher side of love throughout the film. Cal, now alone, meets Jacob (Ryan Gosling), a smooth ladies’ man, at a bar who decides to take Cal under his wing, to fix his image, his game, and get him back on the market. All the while Jacob falls in love with Hannah (Emma Stone) which leaves him in unfamiliar territory too. The film mainly follows these two couples with a third C plot story of Cal’s son fancying his babysitter which too adds to the comedy and indeed the romance and drama of the film.
For me, Crazy Stupid Love is a rare film because it’s a rom com which I genuinely found laugh out loud funny. It’s great fun throughout, which is mainly down to the great chemistry the actors share together. Be it Ryan Gosling with Steve Carell and their hilarious bromance/teacher student relationship, or Gosling and Emma Stone’s perfect romantic chemistry, it works very well in creating an engaging and entertaining film.
The plot unravels almost like a Shakespearean play, as the love triangles and relationships play out they come together in a final act (one particular scene in fact) which is brilliantly funny and well planned. It’s something I certainly didn’t expect and is thoroughly enjoyable when all of the plots are tied up in a neat bow.
The comedy in this film mainly comes from the before mentioned chemistry between Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell and the many enjoyable moments they share, as well as their ever altering relationship as the two characters evolve throughout their arcs. Emma Stone too is (as always) a pleasure to watch and genuinely funny and although Julianne Moore’s character tends to be more centred in the emotional and dramatic components of the film, she too adds to the film’s comedy at times however I would’ve liked to have seen more of her.
Speaking of the drama and emotion, despite the hilarious aspects of the film it still deals with intense and emotional themes surrounding love, divorce and the breakdown of a family. The breakdown of Cal and Emily’s relationship is actually very sad and their uncertainty as to what to do with themselves, particularly when Emily rings Cal faking a problem with the house just so she can talk to him, is rather heart wrenching. This I personally find is a true strength of Julianne Moore (as shown in Still Alice) which is why her performance is just as important to the film’s overall tone.
Crazy Stupid Love is a good blend of fun, heart warming comedic moments and truly sad sequences that make this film so strong, which I think is a credit not only to the actors but the directors (Glenn Ficarra, John Requa) and also Dan Fogelman (the writer).
Highlight: Ryan Gosling’s performance and chemistry with pretty much anyone on screen was certainly a joy to watch. He is the stem of comedy for me throughout the film and it’s difficult not to be drawn in by his general aura. His dry sense of humour and brilliant comic timing is something I very much enjoy about him as an actor, particularly in this film.