Tuesday, January 12, 2016

REVIEW: Crazy, Stupid, Love starring Steve Carell

This movie is indeed stupid, but I'm in love with Steve Carell! 

Warning straight off the bat: you will be cringing 90% of the time during this film.

Don't get me wrong, I laughed plenty of times through this movie. Most of the plot is utterly ridiculous nonsense involving fully grown adults acting like dopey idiots, but its easy enough to sit through if you don't mind feeling terrible about not doing something better with your time. Is this film worth sitting through the runtime? Only if you a.) are watching it with a significant other or b.) have nothing better to do. There is, however, a third option...If you LOVE Steve Carell.

Steve Carell is the number one reason I watched this. He was great in The Office, Little Miss Sunshine, and Dan in Real Life. If you are like me and you respect this widely loved comedy (and dramatic) actor, listen up: THIS WILL SATISFY YOUR STEVE HARVEY CRAVINGS! He is in A LOT of this movie, and it utilizes his distinct personality and goofball wit soon well!

Crazy, Stupid, Love gets credit from me for not being afraid to be sexy! Emma Stone is great eye candy for us guys with a cute face and tight body, while Ryan Gosling turns up the heat for the ladies with hot abs and a trademark swagger. They have great chemistry! Academy Award winning actress Marisa Tomei also appears in the film as a psycho lady. I thought she was great but was underutilized.

DOWNSIDES: The subplot involving the babysitter crush was simply uncomfortable to watch. Sexualizing an underage girl is simply wrong, add that with a thirteen year old boy talking about masturbation (played for laughs, mind you) and you get a really, really cringeworthy feeling. The ending to this little romance was the most sickening, wrong part of the whole thing. I hung my head in shame and disgust.

I also HATED the stupid reveal involving Emma Stone's character and who her family is. It made my eyes roll to the back of my head. It wasn't even funny in a tongue-in-cheek way, it was just maddening.

Overall, watch this movie if you're a Steve Carell fan or a fan of low-brow romantic comedies masquerading as high-brow, do not watch this movie if you're a fan of decent human behavior.

REVIEW: Navel Gazing: True Tales of Bodies, Mostly Mine (but also my mom's, which I know sounds weird)

A triumph! If you love to laugh, you NEED to get this book!

Boy did I love this book! It was funny and touching in all the right places. I found myself laughing out loud on almost every page! Michael Ian Black has done it again! His often-times silly and every-time witty reflections on life are addictive. I read the whole book in only a few days! Literally couldn't put it down. Michael Ian Black has been one of my favorite comedians for years; now he's one of my favorite authors.

You may know Michael Ian Black from movies such as Wet Hot American Summer, The Baxter, They Came Together, and Wanderlust. In addition, he has been in many great TV shows including The State, Stella and all those amazingly funny 'I love the...' shows on VH1 (my personal favorite was I love 1983 Strikes Back). On a personal level I have been a fan of his since I first fell in love with his dry and acerbic commentary on chicken nuggets.

Michael Ian Black's intoxicating yet extremely neurotic personality shines through the pages. You feel as though he's whispering in your ear as you read. He has masterfully transitioned his finely honed comedy skills into a writer's voice anyone can read and relate to.

My personal favorite tale covered in the book had to do with a punk band Michael Ian Black started in high school. As someone with many, many regrets throughout my own life I really connected to his self-reflection during this section of the book (and every other section as well). I found that chapter VERY funny and therapeutic in a way.

Overall, this is an outstanding book comedy fans of all ages will read and enjoy. Hopefully it will go down as one of the all-time classics of humor literature. For now it will be regarded as another triumph for Michael Ian Black, now undisputedly one of the greatest comedic minds of our generation.