Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Crazy, Stupid, Love. in Theaters

In this movie-drought time of the year, if you've gone to the theater, chances are you've seen this one already. But it's not out of theaters yet, so if you haven't seen it, hopefully this will help you decide whether to take the plunge or wait for the good ones coming out soon.

Crazy, Stupid, Love. stars Steve Carell, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, and some pretty good child/teen actors. It's a bit of a mix of genres, but mainly Romantic Comedy rated mostly appropriately at PG-13. Having said that, though, I do have to mention that there are some wildly inappropriate parts. Ryan Gosling plays a hunky ladies' man (Jacob) who stalks the bar and takes home women just for sex. Although no sex is seen, the innuendo is all there. Also, the F-word is used.

But the story has a message, which in many ways balances out the negative aspects. Steve Carell plays Cal Weaver, a husband and father who's grown so used to life that he takes his wife for granted and doesn't love her with any sort of fire anymore. His wife, Emily (Julianne Moore), in turn, cheats on him and asks for a divorce, which he gives her like an old dog rolling over to die, passionless. But he misses her so badly he can't stop talking about her at the bar, which gets the attention of ladies' man Jacob. Here, the story gets really muddy morally. Cal, who's never had sex with any woman but his wife (which I wholeheartedly applaud), proceeds to follow Jacob's advice to his detriment. This whole part of the movie is mixed with a lot of humor, making it less unpleasant to watch, but it's still wrong. In time, however, Cal looks better, has learned how to get the spark back, and realizes he has only one soul mate.

But there's a whole lot more to the end that I don't want to spoil. Suffice it to say, it's laugh-out-loud funny with great, quotable lines. And the outcome is happily satisfactory. There's more than one romance (some of it inappropriate), but it all connects in the end. You are probably wondering what role Emma Stone gets to play, but I'll leave that as a surprise. It's hard to explain without explaining too much.

The messages I don't like about the movie are these: you need to experience more than one woman to be good at sex, sex is part of a premarital relationship but means more if you just don't do it the first night, masturbation is okay if the person you are thinking about gives you permission. Those are the big ones, and let me just emphasize again: I DON'T agree with the above.

Now, the messages I really appreciate about the movie: you can love just one person all your life; you can get back together after divorce; you can still love your spouse even when you think you hate him or her; marriage takes effort, but the effort is worth it.

So, you weigh the negative against the positive to decide whether or not this is a movie worth watching. I can't exactly recommend it, but at the same time, I can say that it didn't leave me feeling dirty, for all that it could have. Knowing what it contained, I might not have chosen to watch it, but having watched it, I can't say I regret it.

Three stars.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.