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DVD Review: Like Crazy

March 6, 2012

Like Crazy – A Paramount Pictures’ Release

http://www.likecrazy.com/

DVD Release Date: March 6th, 2012

Rated PG for sexual content and coarse language

Running time: 90 minutes

Drake Doremus (dir.)

Drake Doremus (writer)

Ben York Jones (writer)

Dustin O’Halloran (music)

Anton Yelchin as Jacob

Felicity Jones as Anna

Jennifer Lawrence as Sam

Charlie Bewley as Simon

Our reviews below:

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Like Crazy DVD Review By John C.

*** (out of 4)

Awarded the top prize at Sundance and premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival, Like Crazy is a small romance shot on the video setting of an HD camera by young director Drake Doremus.  Jacob (Anton Yelchin) and Anna (Felicity Jones) fell in love at college in Los Angeles, their relationship made up of fun dates around the city and lazy days spent in bed.  But when her visa expires and she is deported back to England, they struggle to keep up a long-term relationship as they both start to feel the physical and metaphorical distance coming between them.  Anna keeps getting promoted at her job, Jacob finds distraction in a co-worker (Jennifer Lawrence).

There is a sense of ambiguity to some of the plot points that seems to blur the passage of time, although this can be overlooked as it allows the film to play out at the perfect length of 88-minutes.  But it is ultimately the strong performances and entirely improvised dialogue that make Like Crazy a believable and sometimes very touching look at young relationships.

The DVD includes commentary with director Drake Doremus, editor Jonathan Alberts and cinematographer John Guleserian.

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Like Crazy DVD Review By Erin V.  

*** (out of 4)

A small indie film that I first saw at TIFF 2011, Like Crazy is a quiet love story of two university students – Jacob (Anton Yelchin), American, and Anna (Felicity Jones), British.  When Anna’s student visa expires, she is supposed to go back to Britain for the summer to get it renewed, but figuring it won’t hurt to stay a few more weeks, she spends the first half of the summer in the USA with Jacob instead.  When she finally does visit her parents for a week though, she is told that she is not allowed back into the States.  And thus starts Jacob and Anna’s attempt at a long-distance relationship.

Of course, like a lot of young loves attempting to cross an ocean between them, they drift apart and away from each other, struggling to both get the ban on Anna’s visa lifted, and keep their relationship as it was.  The problem is that they both develop very full lives on their respective continents and one has to wonder whether their relationship has run its natural course.

Shot on a Canon stills camera, and with many of the lines done through improv, Like Crazy is a true indie effort, that works mainly due to the good acting from the leads.  All of the characters here are very believable as well, and while it could seem mundane, it can be taken as a small glimpse into just two lives.  It doesn’t play out like a Hollywood love story, but rather as reality.

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Like Crazy DVD Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

Like Crazy tells a story about the challenges of an international relationshop.  It all begins when Anna (Felicity Jones), a young English woman falls in love with an American classmate, Jacob (Anton Yelchin) while in college.  But Anna must return home, if she is to obtain the papers that would allow her to move to the USA.  While apart, Jacob and Anna develop their own seperate lives, as well as other relationships.  They still remember each other, but can marriage even save their relationship?

This is a quiet and well acted film that doesn’t pretend to have all the answers.  It doesn’t say whether the decisions the characters make are right or wrong, it just shows how their lives progress.  Like Crazy is a decent indie drama that is worth checking out.

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Like Crazy DVD Review By Maureen

**1/2 (out of 4)

Young love, first love, crazy in love all describe the low-key, bittersweet romance between college students Anna (Felicity Jones) and Jacob (Anton Yelchin) in Like Crazy.  Anna is a British student studying journalism in Calafornia.  Jacob is an American studying furniture design at the same campus.  After quietly noticing one another in class, Anna decides to put her writing skills to good use and leaves Jacob a love letter of sorts on his car windshield.  The rest, as the saying goes, is history.  The pair become inseparable and when Anna’s student visa expires, she foolishly decides to ignore her return to England date and spend the summer with Jacob.  After a brief trip back to England for family reasons, Anna tries to come to the USA but is stopped at customs.  Forced to return to England, Anna and Jacob have to rely on texts and phone calls to stay in touch.

Like Crazy realistically shows the challanges of long distance romances.  In their time apart, both Anna and Jacob find someone else to fill the lonely void in their lives.  Back in England, Anna cares for Simon (Charlie Bewley) and Jacob shares his business and bed with Samantha (Jennifer Lawrence).  Yet Anna and Jacob still remain connected emotionally, even going through a marriage ceremony to help speed up Anna’s visa request.  In the end it’s up to the viewer to speculate whether or not the young couple’s relationship will last.

Like Crazy feels a little slow moving at times, and the camera work is a bit too shaky in some parts for my liking.  However the low-key, slow moving nature of this quiet romance has an appeal and the performances by the two leads are nice to watch.

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Like Crazy DVD Review By Tony

**1/2 (out of 4)

Like Crazy is the inscription burned into a chair made by Jacob (Anton Yelchin) for Anna (Felicity Jones), describing their love at a Southern California college, he in furniture design and she in journalism. As a British national, Anna’s student visa stipulates that she spend summers back home. Having only gone back with Jacob to visit her parents for the last week of summer, she is blocked from reentering the U.S. and Jacob has to return home alone. Over the next few months they both become established in their careers and involved with other people, Jacob with his assistant Sam (Jennifer Lawrence) and Anna with her neighbour Simon (Charlie Bewley). Anna’s parents (Oliver Muirhead and Alex Kingston) like Jacob, and do everything they can, including encouraging marriage, to expedite Anna’s return to him, but as months pass, a reunion becomes less inevitable, despite their mutual attraction.

Co-written by Drake Doremus and Ben York Jones and directed by Doremus, Like Crazy has a very indie feel, with lots of closeups that fortunately make the fine cast look good. It moves at a pace that gives us time to know the characters, while keeping running time down to 90 minutes by moving the story along between dialogue with quick flashes and time lapse images. The passionate scenes limited to head and shoulders shots earn a PG-13 rating. I appreciated the way the choices made by these attractive but flawed characters force us to wonder about whether they deserve each other, for better or for worse, leading to good post-film discussion.

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Consensus: Written and directed by Drake Doremus, Like Crazy is a quiet and sometimes touching look at young love with believable performances from Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones.  **3/4 (Out of 4)

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