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The ViewAuckland Review

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Review byMatthew Turner19/04/2006

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 125 mins

Enjoyable, sharply written, frequently hilarious drama with superb performances, strong period detail and an evocative soundtrack.

What’s it all about?
Set in Montreal between 1960 and 1980, C.R.A.Z.Y stars Michel Cote as Gervais Beaulieu, a family man raising his five sons with his patient wife, Laurianne (Danielle Proulx). The initials of his son’s names reflect his Patsy Cline obsession – nerdy Christian (Maxime Tremblay), bad boy Raymond (Pierre-Luc Brillant), sport-obsessed Antoine (Alex Gravel), sensitive Zachary (Emile Vallee, then Marc-Andre Grondin) and finally young, overweight Yvan (Felix-Antoine Despatie).

The film is told from Zachary’s point of view as he feuds with his older brother and enjoys a close relationship with his father, until Gervais begins to suspect that Zachary might be a little different to his brothers.

The Good
The script is sharply observed, with several details from screenwriter Francois Boulay’s own life. The attention to period detail is extremely impressive, giving a real sense of Montreal life in the 60s and 70s, thanks to a fabulously evocative soundtrack.

Marc-Andre Grondin makes an engaging, likeable lead, even if we don’t always approve of his actions. He’s extremely good at conveying Zachary’s internal yearning to fit in. The supporting cast are all excellent but the stand-out is Michel Cote, whose dad-like behaviour is both amusing and familiar.

The Great
There’s a huge amount of humour in the film, with several laugh-out-loud scenes. In addition, Jean-Marc Vallee handles the emotional scenes well, never resorting to cliche or sentimentality.

Worth seeing?
In short, C.R.A.Z.Y. is a sharply written, beautifully acted and thoroughly enjoyable film that’s both moving and frequently hilarious. Highly recommended.

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Content updated: 20/02/2020 02:27

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