By Carolyn Williams
Cal Weaver (Steve Carrell, “The Office,” “The 40-Year-Old Virgin”) has a steady job, good kids, a nice house, and a happy marriage. Or so he thinks. But when his wife of over 20 years and high school sweetheart, Emily (Julianne Moore, “The Kids Are All Right,” “Children of Men”), announces over dinner that she cheated on him and wants a divorce, life as he knows it unravels. Suddenly single and thrown back into the dating scene for the first time in decades, Cal unsuccessfully skulks around at a local bar, harassing passersby with the story of his failed marriage. Fortunately, he is taken under the wing of Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling, “Drive”, “Lars and the Real Girl”), who quickly transforms him into a suave ladies’ man in an attempt to get back at his wife.
The subplots are similarly comic. Hannah (Emma Stone, “The Help,” Easy A”), a twenty-something studying for the bar exam meets Jacob at the bar he and Cal frequent, but, in an unprecedented move, rejects his advances. Later on, as she realizes her relationship with her loyal boyfriend is going nowhere, she returns to the bar to see what it would be like with “hot bar guy.” Meanwhile, Robbie, Cal’s 13-year-old son, pines for his babysitter, Jessica, who couldn’t be less interested as she has a thing for Cal himself. At this point, Cal has had enough bar flings and wants to win back his wife. Meanwhile, Jacob struggles with the idea of committing to Hannah.
“Crazy, Stupid, Love.” lives up to its title. With a slightly unconventional plotline, witty dialogue, and a stellar supporting cast (Marisa Tomei, Kevin Bacon, and an awkward Josh Groban), directors Glenn Ficarra and John Requa have created a seriously off-the-beaten-path film. “Going into the movie I didn’t have very high expectations, but I ended up being pleasantly surprised by how good it was,” Kendall Woods ’14 said. Indeed, it stands out in the vignette genre as a movie that is not merely a bunch of high-profile names attached to some holiday theme, but a cohesive and infectiously engaging story.
“Ryan Gosling and Steve Carrell are a surprisingly entertaining pair that brought humor to a movie that otherwise would have been just another love story,” Ava Giuliano ’14 said.
This lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek look at love has all the elements we look for in a good love story, plus one excellent twist at the end. “It’s a movie you would be crazy and stupid not to see!” Giuliano said.