So when I saw the promos for Crazy, Stupid, Love I was somewhat hopeful. I hoped to see a entertaining portrayal of the MAP, and possibly game in general. I was not disappointed, much.
In the beginning we are introduced to Cal Weaver, a frumpy, passive-aggressive husband whose wife cheated on him. After his wife announces she wants a divorce, Cal does nothing to save his marriage and moves out immediately to get away from her. He ends up at a local bar and complains loudly about his wife and divorce to anyone who will listen. After a few nights of this, Jacob, one of the bar's patrons and a skilled ladies man, takes pity on Cal and offers to help him to rediscover his manhood. Cal accepts and0 Jacob then guides him through the MAP, with a hilarious combination of contempt and concern.
This part of the movie was the best. Jacob comes across as a believable pick-up artist. He runs a highly confident direct game, while not as tight as it could be, would probably work with the powerful frame that he has. He peacocks with a wide array of colorful clothing, mostly suits, all perfectly fitting, in contrast to Cal's ill fitting clothes. The best thing about Jacob is his frame. The movie is worth watching just to see what amused mastery looks like. His frame never cracks, he is always calm and always confident. His movements are slow and deliberate, and he never looks like he is wasting energy. In short he is an ALPHA, and one worth watching.
Cal is unquestionably a BETA, with more problems than just his clothes. He is passive-aggressive, sad, and hopeless with women, including his wife. Despite this he is likable and I wanted him to succeed in his efforts to change. Cal's transformation is mostly portrayed through his change in wardrobe, which is fairly dramatic. It drives home the fact that a change in clothes has a significant effect on how attractive a guy is. But it also shows him working out, and though Jacob's lessons, changing the way he thinks about women. It all comes together when Cal begins approaching women in the bar. At first his attempts are awkward, but after some stumbling he begins to have a great deal of success. I appreciated the nod toward realism as Cal's success admits that game works to attract women. When he finally talks to his wife again he gives her this small speech about how he should have fought for her that the divorce was partly his fault because he became complacent and boring. At this point I was seriously wondering if the script writer had read Athol's blog.
Sadly the movie quickly loses ground. After the speech the movie turns into a sitcom. It stayed funny throughout but I was disappointed to see that the work Cal had done not mean much in the second half of the movie. The connection between his change and his attempts to get his wife back were weak and not convincing. In the end the movie devolves into praise of BETA traits and soul-mates. I was left thinking that the movie was far from over. Cal did some things right but at the end he still had a long way to go. He still needed to stop saying passive aggresive things. He needed to start gaming his wife. Really he needed to continue on the same track that Jacob sets him on in the first half of the movie, but this time with an eye to getting his wife back.
This is not to say that the movie is bad. It is quite good and very funny. It would be a great date movie. But while this movie comes closer to understanding game, I am still waiting for one that gets it completely. I can dream, right?