By William Paul Jones and Megan Lane

ML:  So, we went to see Crazy, Stupid, Love last night.  It’s the whole romantic comedy thing… One review just won’t do.  You need one girl to get in there-

WPJ: And one person who knows what the hell he’s talking about.

ML: No, I’m writing the intro.

WPJ: Misogyny!

ML: The movie follows Cal (Steve Carell) and Emily (Julianne Moore), a married couple of 25 years that just decided to get divorced due to overwhelming boredom.  Cal, devastated, seeks solace in the teachings of a lone-wolf ladies’ man Jacob (Ryan Gosling), who mentors Cal to become the swinging, stylish bachelor that he never had the chance to be before.  Meanwhile, Jacob is in the middle of his own first experience with true love, Cal’s son, Robbie (Jonah Bobo) deals with a crippling crush on his baby sitter, and Emily tries to reconcile her own previous affair with a colleague in what becomes a tangled web of romantic storylines much like an American version of Love Actually.

WPJ: That was nicely done.

ML: Thanks.  It took a few minutes.

WPJ: The cast is a lot smaller than Love Actually.  And this one is a lot more believable.

ML: Believable?

WPJ:  Yes, believable.  The stories may have been stuff we’ve seen before.  Like the son being desperately in love with the family babysitter, but it felt fresh, it felt real.  And the character’s actions felt real, like when the babysitter walks in on Robbie masturbating, he honestly feels like the situation will be made better if he tells her he was thinking about her.

ML:  Wait, you don’t think that made the situation better, do you?

WPJ:  When I was thirteen, I might have.

ML:  Fair.

WPJ: On topic, Lane!  This was a movie that I wasn’t expecting a lot from, but it really surprised me.  I’ve been disappointed a lot in movies this summer, but this one was a breath of fresh air.

ML:  See, I keep telling you that you need to watch the romantic comedies with me!  Lay off the superhero movies.

WPJ:  Sure, that’s going to happen.

ML: I can try.

WPJ: This wasn’t really a romantic comedy, though, not in the way I normally think about it.

ML: Of course it was-

WPJ: Hear me out.  It was almost exclusively from the perspective of the guys, for one thing.  You don’t get that much – or ever – in rom-coms.  Even in the scenes that you really thought were going to come from Emily’s perspective, it ended up being about Robbie’s take on the situation, not hers.

ML: What about Jessica (Analeigh Tipton)?  The babysitter?  She had some good time on her own.  Her crush on Cal, that whole storyline was dealt with a lot more fully and independent of any guys that Emily’s whole “Will I, Won’t I” thing.

WPJ: That was a great one.  You want to talk about some skillful filmmaking, they actually took a storyline about a babysitter falling in love with the dad of the kids she watches and made me buy it.  That’s not easy to do.

ML: You’re always hoping high school girls will fall in love with older men.

WPJ: Just one older man.  And even then I know how unlikely it is.

ML: That’s pretty sick, Chubs.  But on that note, the performances were amazing.  Yes, I’ve come to expect this from Julianne Moore and Steve Carell, but the kids, Robbie and Jessica really held their own in an all-star cast that included Emma Stone, Marisa Tomei and Kevin Bacon.

WPJ:  Don’t forget your lover, Gosling.

ML:  Oh, Ryan Gosling.

WPJ:  Seriously though, his storyline was the one that bothered me.  I hate how the swinging bachelor is always “incomplete” until he finds love.  Why can’t he go on being the carefree single guy?  Why does he have to find his “one true love”?

ML:  Because his life is incomplete!  Because he never realized what he was missing.

WPJ:  Oh my God, you’re such a woman.

ML:  Yes I am, Cal needed Jacob to teach him how to be cool and pick up girls, but in the end, that’s not really what he wanted, he wanted his wife back.  And Jacob realized too that his life was just meaningless empty hook-ups.

WPJ:  And what’s so wrong with that?

ML:  It’s meaningless.  It’s in the name.  Is that what he’s supposed to do for the rest of his life?

WPJ:  If it makes him happy, then what’s so wrong with it?

ML:  But it wasn’t making him happy.

WPJ:  It never does, that’s the problem.  With all the movies out there that deal with the carefree bachelor suddenly discovering the joys of monogamy, you’d think there would be one where we see the flip side.  This was the perfect opportunity!  What if Gosling discovered he really was a one-woman man, and Steve Carell decided that the life of the single man was for him, and boom, that’s it, roll credits.  Equality!

ML: That would be pretty weird.

WPJ: Think past your social conditioning!  I’m just saying, way too many soul mates in this movie, not enough consideration of how things actually go down inside a man’s – or even a person’s – mind.

ML: As long as I’m living in a world where Ryan Gosling can be okay with just one woman.

WPJ: You?

ML: Don’t look at me like that.  He and I will be together some day.

WPJ: Why would you want that?  He has a lazy eye.

ML: No, he doesn’t!

WPJ: Look at the pictures.Google him.

ML: The body is just-

WPJ: Lazy eye.