Like Crazy (2011)

Like Crazy (2011) – So this is a movie I was looking forward to that ended up just sort of leaving me cold. In movies like Star Trek, Fright Night, and even the otherwise lousy Terminator: Salvation, Anton Yelchin has proven himself to be a very charismatic young actor and I was looking forward to seeing him in something a little more character-driven (and less explosion-y). Furthermore I rather liked Felicity Jones in The Tempest and was looking forward to seeing her… well pretty much just to seeing her. Neither of the two young leads disappoint, none of the cast do really (Oscar-nominated Winter’s Bone star Jennifer Lawrence also does very well in a small role), but the film has other problems. The plot concerns two young students, one American (Yelchin) and one British (Jones) who meet and fall in love while studying in Los Angeles.  She (stupidly) decides to stay in the U.S. past her visa’s expiration date. When she attends a wedding in the U.K. and returns to the U.S. she’s somehow surprised that they don’t want to let her back in. Long-distance angst ensues. What really bugs me is that there are flashes of a great movie about the harsh realities behind the adolescent idea of “star-crossed” love in here somewhere but instead it just kind of drags. There’s a line between low-key and boring and this film doesn’t really know where it is. There are some heartbreakingly effective scenes but they don’t adequately counter-balance the ones that just seem uninteresting. The love between the two leads that is supposed to drive the whole movie never really sank in for me either. Sure, he’s creative and she’s REALLY cute but I don’t get the immigration-law-defying passion of it. Passion is something that needs to carry a movie like this. The film is supposedly based on the experiences of writer-director Drake Doremus and his ex-wife, so I think his personal connection to the material made him more interested in the material than I was.

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