Movie Review: “Like Crazy”

Written by Rachel Ganzewinkel December 27, 2011

I love this like crazy.

Like Crazy is a story that follows Anna, an English exchange student studying in Los Angeles, and Jacob, an American boy. They fall in love, and of course, it is magical, until it is time for Anna to go back to England after she graduates from college.

With any great love story comes the tale of overcoming the impediment that is keeping them from one another. This impediment is distance and time. One small error on Anna’s part, which is overstaying her Visa, comes to define the functionality of their relationship.

Overall, there are the usual conventions of a couple in love-spending days in bed together, the unbelievably thoughtful gifts only the other could think of, and of course, the occasional pillow fight. This is all fairly conventional. But overall, this didn’t feel like a conventional romance.

The way it was directed and filmed made it seem like the audience was looking in on a real couple living a very real life. They were regular young adults trying to maneuver through a very difficult situation. The authenticity achieved through the film work is what sets this movie apart from the cheesy, over-the-top Hollywood romances.

Also, Felicity Jones and Anton Yelchin (who play Anna and Jacob) have unbelievable levels of chemistry. I haven’t seen two people who legitimately seem stellar for each other in a movie since Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel in (500) Days of Summer. Their body language, their eye contact, their embraces and gestures don’t mimic what it looks like when you’re in love, but seem like the real thing.

Even through the trials and tribulations of their romance, the bickering seemed so real, it makes you feel like a voyeur. Through everything you want this couple to work out. But time and space act as other characters that manipulate and alter their story, adding barriers to Anna and Jacob’s progress as a twosome.

This is not a happy-go-lucky tale of romance and passion. This is about two people trying to make a relationship work. The loneliness that they feel when they are separated is deeply affecting and there will be tears shed. You will at least tear up at one point in the movie. That is guaranteed.

You want Anna and Jacob to be together so badly. You see the repercussions of the one small mistake of over staying a Visa by two months and you just want to scream WHYYY and rewind time so they don’t do it again. This movie makes you see what it’s like to see two people really in love-the good times, the bad times, and the chill times- and makes you believe in love if only for a moment.

That definitely sounds incredibly corny but there’s really no other way to say it. The heartbreaking performances by Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones are what made this movie a Sundance hit and what will make Miss Jones (hopefully) Hollywood’s go-to gal for authentic romantic performances. Anna is not a whiny, needy character who requires this relationship to validate her self-esteem; she is a strong female character who wants to follow her dreams of writing and just happens to fall in love with a man. The characters need each other equally, not out of self-validation, but because they understand each other so completely that they are a part of one another.

This is not a standard chick-flick romance, but one a guy could see without fearing ridicule from his friends. There is no lame factor, simply love and heartache. Which is something everyone can relate to.

My Rating: 7/10

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About Rachel Ganzewinkel

Rachel loves movies and writing and has found the perfect amalgamation in writing movie reviews for We Eat Films. In between movie watching and the real-life world of work, she enjoys tea, reading, writing, and wearing over-size sweaters (while occassionally doing some of these simultaneously).

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