Crazy, Stupid, Love is an odd movie. Tonally it lies between a studio comedy and an Independent drama, something that is further highlighted by the odd casting mix of Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Julianne Moore and Kevin Bacon.
Carell and Moore play Cal and Emily Weaver, a couple who have been happily married for twenty-five years, then one night over dinner Emily drops the bombshell that she has been having an affair and wants to separate. Soon, Cal finds himself alone in a local bar, drowning his sorrows, loudly lambasting his wife and cursing David Lindhagen (Bacon), Emily’s “other man”. Cal befriends Jacob Palmer (Gosling), a suave womanizer who takes Cal under his wing and shows him how to meet women, offering him the opportunity to move on from his failed marriage. However, Jacob’s free-living ways begin to change when he meets and falls in love with Hannah (Emma Stone). Then things start to get really complicated.
Glenn Ficarra and John Requa directed Crazy, Stupid, Love from a script by Dan Fogelman, and while it offers some great laughs, it never crosses over into truly hilarious. It’s not the fault of the cast, Carell shows that he is more than just a funny man, while Gosling further highlights that he’s got great range – who else could have this film, Drive and The Ides of March released in the same twelve months? Moore and Stone offer amiable support, although they don’t have too much to do character-wise. However, their roles appear to be incredibly nuanced when compared to Kevin Bacon and Marisa Tomei’s extended cameos, with Tomei effectively regurgitating her character from What Women Want.
Crazy, Stupid, Love‘s main flaw is in the tone, it appears that Ficarra and Requa decided to divvy-up directing duties on the comedy and drama, effectively shooting two different movies and cutting them together in the editing room. The tone is often off, and at nearly two hours, the film is a tad on the long side. However, that’s not to say that Crazy, Stupid, Love is bad, it’s far from it. It’s fun, well acted and one of the better romantic comedies to come out of Hollywood in the last few years, but it could have been so much more.
About ten minutes of deleted scenes, it’s easy to see why these were removed, and if they weren’t then the film would have clocked-in at over two hours.