A middle-aged husband's life changes dramatically when his wife asks him for a divorce. He seeks to rediscover his manhood with the help of a newfound friend, Jacob, learning to pick up girl... Read allA middle-aged husband's life changes dramatically when his wife asks him for a divorce. He seeks to rediscover his manhood with the help of a newfound friend, Jacob, learning to pick up girls at bars.A middle-aged husband's life changes dramatically when his wife asks him for a divorce. He seeks to rediscover his manhood with the help of a newfound friend, Jacob, learning to pick up girls at bars.
The casting could not have been better, and with the inclusion of Kevin Bacon, connects the film (within 7-degrees of Bacon) to generations of great romantic comedies.
I can count on one hand the number of great romantic comedies in film since 2000 - they are rare, hard to pull off, and this is one of the very best. TV Series are a much better platform for comedy, as the comic moments can be spliced together without having the wrap a complete linear story around it in just two hours - TV is 30 minutes of gags; next episode.
Pulling-off a quality 2-hour story like this one, within the comedy genre (that is both sexy-sweet and funny at the same time;) requires effectively synchronizing a lot of moving parts.
Everyone involved in the production of CSL brought their A-Game, and it shows.
The key tandem in the film's success is Steve Carrell/Ryan Gosling - Without those two delivering the goods, the film would have failed.
They deliver big-time, making this Buddy-Film disguised as a Romantic-Comedy an all-time film arts success.
The Carrell/Gosling best-buddy relationship centers around a man in his 40's (Carrell) in the process of being separated from his middle-school sweetheart and first-and-only-love wife (Julianne Moore), reluctantly entering the modern singles dating world for the first time in his life.
He is completely unprepared and out of step with the times and the game, but runs into the Yoda or "Miyagi" master of ladies-men (Gosling) at a popular local singles bar, who decides to take him under his wing and mentor him in the ways of successfully meeting younger women after observing his wallowing in breakup pain and ineptitude in the singles game. The Pygmalion-like tutoring and transformation is truly brilliant fun to watch.
A complex intertwining connection of the entire cast starts to reveal itself piece by piece, and the hilarious apex of the film is one of the most memorable pay-off moments in comedy-film history.
The supporting cast orbits around the two new-best-friend buddies, and their acting excellence results in CSL rating as one of the all-time great ensemble comedies.
This was the first of three (as of 2021) successful movie pairings of Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, each subsequent project propelling both into higher orbits of superstardom - the third pairing 'La La Land' resulted in multiple award nominations, including an Oscar win for Stone, and with Hollywoods penchant for staying with winning formulas, it is likely we shall see more of these two together in film.
CSL fits the new millennial era culture well, and perhaps years from now will seem dated to this period (filmed right before the dating App explosion that occurred from 2012-2015 that replaced and swiped-away bar meetups, it is already aging in that regard). This just means everyone "got it" during its production, and certainly transferred that "get" to the screen with notable comic skill.
I don't give out "10s" often, and with rare exception, I wait at least one year to re-evaluate a film to see if it is truly worthy of a 10 (seeing such films at least 3 times). The only other comedies I've reviewed and rated on IMDb that received my 10 rating have been 'The Graduate', 'Almost Famous', 'American Graffiti', 'Toy Story' and 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off' to give reference. There are many others I simply haven't gotten around to reviewing of course, but this one will end up on my top 50 comedies all time list when I get to that to-do-list task.
Needless to say, I "highly recommended" 'Crazy, Stupid Love', and give it the proverbial two thumbs up! 👍👍
- Mar 8, 2021