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"Crazy Love"

Directed by Dan Klores.
Written by Dan Klores.
Release Year:  2007
Review Date:  5/20/07


"Crazy Love", a documentary that showed at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival (but, I didn't see it there), really is a testament to a film with a title that is completely in line with what happens in the movie--two completely crazy people fell in love, fell out of it, then inexplicably fell back into it...mainly, because they are both crazy!

Dan Klores' chatty documentary follows just two characters--Burt Pugach and Linda Riss.  Back in 1959, nerdy playboy Burt was a lover of the ladies, if you will...and then, one day, he met Linda, and he was more than just head over heels about her...he was CRAZY about her, and began making advances to make her his girl for life.  About a year into their dating, Linda had had enough, even though she thought that Burt was a great guy; he was too obsessive about her, so she decided to call it quits.  Bad move--Burt was so upset about the breakup that one day, he went over to Linda's apartment and literally threw acid into Linda's eyes, blinding her for life.

Burt's action sent him to jail for about 15 years, and what happens during this time and just after he gets out of jail is the stuff of New York City legend; many of the news stories and interviews that were done about the couple after the acid attack are included in "Crazy Love" and you will find yourself shaking your head about how ridiculous all of this is all the way to the finish line.  The film is basically brief snippets of those news bits interspersed with LOTS of talking by our two leads, each giving their opinion of the random topics at hand that relate to their relationship.  The film was actually a bit too chatty for me, but there's not much movie here without it; this is one of the few docs where I was actually hoping for more third-party interviews, because what little we get from the surviving friends of these two lead characters isn't that great.

Besides that, I thought that "Crazy Love" would probably make a better "60 Minutes" story than a full-length documentary feature; you could tell this story the same way in a more streamlined format and still get the point across.  But, you can't argue with this much--this is one hell of a wacky couple, and directory Klores does a great job of capturing that onscreen.

Rating:  $9.50 Show


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Bellview Rating System:

"Opening Weekend":  This is the highest rating a movie can receive.  Reserved for movies that exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development, setting...or Salma Hayek.  Not necessarily in that order. 

"$X.XX Show":  This price changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently, it is the $9.50 Show.  While not technically perfect, this is a movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.  "Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca", but you'll have a great time watching.  The $9.50 Show won't win any Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see "Office Space"). 

"Matinee":  An average movie that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.  Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about yourself.  A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave the theater saying "That wasn't too, did you see that Lakers game last night?" 

"Rental":  This rating indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one."  Mostly forgettable, you couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the video store was out of copies of "Ronin."  If you can, see this movie for free.  This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a half stars." 

"Hard Vice":  This rating is the bottom of the barrel.  A movie that only six other human beings have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen.  A Shannon Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a movie.  Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or "Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!  (Warning:  strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard Vice"-rated movies.)

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/ except where noted
1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 01/08/09