Director Adam Sherman’s sophomore act, Crazy Eyes, starring Lukas Haas and Madeline Zima, made its world premiere at SXSW 2012. Having been purchased by Strand Releasing for an early-summer opening just two weeks ago, Crazy Eyes was met with a fair bit of hype from festival-goers. The story follows the womanizing macho-millionaire Zach (Haas) through an uncharacteristic obsession with a young Rebecca, whom he calls “Crazy Eyes” (Zima). However, combined with Zach’s hard-partying lifestyle and countless escapades, the relationship throws Zach’s familial obligations to the wayside and subdues him in a bout of relentless alcoholism.

Unfortunately, despite casting the film as “just another story about love,” Sherman leaves Rebecca’s character frustratingly undeveloped and the story quickly devolves into an unending loop of drunken vomiting and awkward sexual encounters. When Zach’s father suffers from an unexpected stroke, instead of drawing the viewer in, the sub-plot feels more gimmicky than engaging. Ultimately, it falls well short of (500) Days of Summer or Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which tackle the theme of romantic rejection far more effectively.

1.5/5 Stars