The Movie Waffler New Release Review - Crazy Stupid Love | The Movie Waffler

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New Release Review - Crazy Stupid Love


Directed by: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa
Starring: Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Julianne Moore, Marisa Tomei, Kevin Bacon
For a mainstream Hollywood comedy this ventures into the sort of twisted territory that even Todd Solondz would find uncomfortable. There's a sub-plot involving a seventeen year old girl that at times is just plain creepy. Obsessed with Carell, she takes some nude photos of herself and puts them in an envelope marked with his name intending to post them at some later point. However her mother finds the envelope and opens it up to her horror. She then hands the envelope to her husband and lets him check out the pictures. What the fuck??? What mother is going to present her husband with sexually explicit pictures of his teenage daughter? Bear with me, it gets worse. The movie treats this as if it's perfectly okay yet implies that should Carell's character actually become involved with this girl it would be an outrage. As part of the movie's happy ending the girl decides to give the same photos as a gift to a thirteen year old boy who has been obsessing over her. Let's think about this for a second; a seventeen year old, technically an adult, takes nude photos of herself and gives them to a thirteen year old, technically a child. I'm pretty sure this is illegal and certainly immoral by most standards. Did nobody connected with the film stop for a moment to think about this? What about those moral guardians of American virtue the MPAA? They gave this movie a PG-13 rating. If these sort of scenarios were in an independent or foreign language film do you think they'd be so liberal? Hell no, this would be an R rating hands down. But hey it's only a bit of mild incest and peadophilia, it's not like two adults of the same sex shared a kiss or anything.
Perhaps what worked in the movie's favour was it's portrayal of family values. In this twisted moral landscape the most sacred thing is marriage. Never mind the fact that your spouse is a complete bitch and shows no real signs of why you would possibly want to reunite with her.
The film takes a dim view of those who shun marriage, all the single characters are either sluts or psychopaths. There's a scene where a character is portrayed as a villain because he tells his girlfriend they haven't known each other long enough to be wed. Sounds pretty sensible, right? Not in this tea-party propaganda piece. Yes, anyone who strays from good old wholesome values is worthy of scorn according to these film-makers. Tomei's character is constantly the butt of alcoholic jokes despite being sober for five years. There's even a fucking AIDS joke!
What's most disappointing is the presence of some really good acting talent. These actors need to tread very carefully, it's election time next year and it'll be interesting to see what sides are taken. If any of these stars claim to be liberals they need to be reminded they were a part of the most right-wing movie of 2011.
3/10