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Review: Like Crazy (2011)

Special Jury Prize at Sundance for Best Film and Best Actress, 72% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes 

I've been meaning to watch this film for a while, as I'm a big fan of Felicity Jones. She's a seriously underrated actress and is always effortlessly stunning and adorable in everything she's in. I loved her Catherine Morland in ITV's adaptation of Northanger Abbey  and of course Chalet Girl  (but the fact that Ed Westwick is in that film probably had something to do with it as well). 

Like Crazy  is about a couple who met in college in L.A. but are torn apart because the female lead (Anna) is British and is banned from entering the U.S. after overstaying her visa. The male lead (Jacob) does his best to try to make things work but is tied down by his furniture design company. Basically, the two go back and forth throughout the film trying to decide whether or not they should be together amidst the distance. What's really interesting about the film is that there was no real script; the director Drake Doremus had a basic idea about the plot and the actors improvised almost all of their lines.  

Thus, the raw emotions that are dealt with in the film have a feeling of authenticity to them. Since the lines are improvised, the film can feel a bit slow at times, as conversations seem to drag. But it's quite effective in portraying the monotonous side of relationships and the little things that can create tension between two people. At the same time, feelings of love also seem more genuine and the scenes where the actors say nothing seems to reveal the most about their love for each other. 

The filming style also contributes to a sense of intimacy, as it was shot with a DSLR camera. Some viewers may not like the unsteady filming technique but I guess this downside is true for many indie-style films. And also like many indie films, the soundtrack is amazing and definitely becomes part of the story.

It's very similar to the style of To The Wonder  (2012), which I think is one of the best soundtracks of all time. "The Awakening" (song from the trailer) is so beautiful I want to cry whenever I listen to it. Although trying to get through that film feels like trying to read a 300 page instruction manual on how to properly assemble and clean a porter potty. 

Anyway...I think Like Crazy will speak to most people because it's essentially a peek into everyone's relationship - a side that outsiders don't see. It's the petty fights or vulnerability that exists in any relationship. It balances the euphoria of being in love with the harsh realities that life sometimes poses, challenging the audience to decide whether or not Anna and Jacob should be together.

Personally, I really enjoyed the film and thought that it was the perfect film to watch alone in bed after a long day. Hope you guys have a change to see it!