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Steve Carell
Ryan Gosling
Emma Stone
Julianne Moore.
Glenn Ficarra
John Requa.
Dan Fogelman.
Running Time
118 minutes

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Crazy, Stupid, Love
Heartfelt smart sweet

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After 15 years, Cal’s (Steve Carell) wife (Julianne Moore) ends a quiet dinner by telling him she wants a divorce. Struggling on his own, Cal pals up with a young man (Gosling) who attempts to teach him the ways of being single and care-free.

Crazy, Stupid, Love
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Crazy Stupid Love has a little problem. It occurs around the halfway mark. Up until then, everything’s been fine. Steve Carell has been likable as Cal, a middle-aged man trying to get over being dumped by his wife by hanging out with a young barhound (Ryan Gosling, showing sly comedy chops and about 54 abdominal muscles) who teaches him the ways of the stud/objectionable douchebag. He’s done the boy version of the fashion montage (putting on nice suits and having a haircut that doesn’t look like it was done by a rusted Edward Scissorhands) and bedded a wired Marisa Tomei. It’s all very fun, if not a tiny bit tired and steeped in annoying plinky music from Now That’s What I Call Indie Cinema Vol. 3. Then a scene comes out of nowhere and smacks it like a rail crash.

Without wanting to spoil anything —although if you didn’t know this was coming from minute one you really need to brush up on rom-com lore — it’s the moment pithy lawyer Hannah (Emma Stone) decides she’s going to give Jacob (Gosling) a chance. It’s not so much a seduction as a throw down, a trading of moves and brush-offs. But it relaxes into something so stylish, so easy, funny, wildly romantic, casually sexy and really quite silly that the film seems doomed not to recover. It flies well above everything before it. As soon as it’s over you want to be back there with those characters. Everything else seems a bit floppy and wan in contrast.

Delightfully, however, the rest of the movie rises to meet it. After a first half that dashes about haphazardly, the relationships thicken. It’s still romantic comedy, written deft and detailed by Dan Fogelman, but it’s shooting harder for the romance, unafraid to follow a big laugh with a longer breather.

Every sigh and misty eye is earned, played by a cast so skilled you never give it a thought. It’s rare for a rom-com to manage even one truly romantic relationship. Most just crassly clatter towards the bit with the power ballad. This manages three, arguably four. It’s one of the most delightful, witty films of the year so far. This is a keeper.

A wonderful comedy of romance, pain and getting it all wrong until somebody makes you do it right. The kind of film that makes you want to call someone the minute it’s over, even if just to tell them to go see this movie.

Reviewed by Olly Richards

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Crazy, Stupid, Love
Empire Star Rating

Naked photos for 13yo kid? Srly?... Great movie but final is a shame. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ARmy2510 at 00:30, 01 March 2012 | Report This Post

Wonderful Crazy Stupid Love

Funny, sweet, romantic, touching. This twist is a lttle obvious, but the whole thing is well written and well acted. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lynnshep at 22:26, 23 February 2012 | Report This Post

Wonderful Crazy Stupid Love

Funny, sweet, romantic, touching. This twist is a lttle obvious, but the whole thing is well written and well acted. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lynnshep at 22:26, 23 February 2012 | Report This Post


I enjoyed this so much. One of my favourite films of the year, and a genuine treat. I saw the title and thought 'oh no, here we go again', but I am so glad to be proven wrong. It's hilarious in parts and never fails to deliver laughs throughout. Gosling is brilliant as always, but I have to agree that carrell is the star, maybe his best performance ever. It's cool, funny, sad, uplifting and pretty damn beautiful. A tear was nearly shed, i have to say. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Coyleone at 02:16, 09 December 2011 | Report This Post

surprisingly good!

sweet but not too predictable plot, ACTUAL HUMOUR, not seen that in a rom-com for a while, and of course, who would say no to ryan gosling with no shirt on? a must see if you want cheering up! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Swedle at 11:17, 08 October 2011 | Report This Post

RE: Crazy, Stupid, Love. Review

] Crazy, Stupid, Love (Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, 2011)]reallyd this. Don't be put off by the terrible title, it's probably the best mainstream romantic comedy since ke Heaven up, you are wrong): funny, romantic, surprising and with a knockout performance by the mighty Ryan Gosling as a womanising slickster who decides to teach the cuckolded Steve Carell - also excellent - how to pick up girls. Is there anything Gosling can't do? Apparently not. ... More

Posted by rick_7 at 09:57, 03 October 2011 | Report This Post

Crazy, Stupid, Love. Review

Crazy, Stupid, Love. is a very good film. It has a great story, great cast and alot of funny scenes in the film. There's a scene in the film where Jacob (Ryan Gosling) and Hannah (Emma Stone) are about to have sex and the things that go on before they do it, is just absolutely hilarious, I couldn't stop laughing. My really only complaint about this film is the first word in the title 'CRAZY', there's not really any crazy things in the film which made me disappointed. But Overall this is just a r... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Edward9630 at 23:39, 28 September 2011 | Report This Post

RE: This Ain't No Chick Flick This Is A Mans Flick A Chick Flick For Men

Agree,this is brilliant. No run of the mill rom-com here.It´s a bit like the Squid and the Whale,but a bit more whimsical. A great cast,but for me Carrell holds it all together.He does his usual comic role,but adds this great believability and humanity to a guy who really had his misery coming to him. Really enjoyed this-4 stars.Indeed,a great couple of weeks in the cinema. ... More

Posted by thetruth at 18:48, 24 September 2011 | Report This Post

This Ain't No Chick Flick This Is A Mans Flick A Chick Flick For Men

And Ryan Gosling is the man! Brilliant film nice twist on the romance love story genre. Wow its been a great week at the cinema so much good films out. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bighousewill at 21:14, 23 September 2011 | Report This Post

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