Steve Carell plays a family man whose wife has admitted she’s had an affair with a guy called David Lindhagen. Carell moves out and seeks solace at the local bar telling everyone how depressed he is and feeling sorry for himself. Needless to say he becomes a very sad case.
Enter Ryan Gosling’s character.
Gosling plays an accomplished ladies man. He’s super-confident, well-dressed and a natural at picking up women. He charms the women each night and more often than not leaves with them on his arm.Gosling takes pity on Carell and takes him under his wing, brandishing his tough love approach to educating Carell.In a memorable line, he tells Carell that the reason he lost his wife is not because of David Lindhagen, but because he lost sight of who he is as ‘a man, a husband and probably as a lover’. Ouch.
Lesson #1: Don’t lose sight of who you are as a man.
Remember that you are a man. Don’t blame others for your misfortunes. Take responsibility for your actions and for who you are. Don’t whine and don’t make excuses.
Lesson #2: “Be better than the Gap”
The standout scene in the movie is when Gosling takes Carell shopping. Carell starts the scene in terrible clothes, symbolising how he has let himself go and descended into ‘dad’ clothes. He looks bland and invisible in clothes that don’t fit. He’s meek and submissive. He has no style of his own and has no impact on anyone around him. The contrast with Gosling is huge. Gosling’s character is sharply dressed. He doesn’t care so much about what people think and he is a much more confident personality who goes after what he wants. He knows the importance of good style and a strong personal appearance on how you are perceived in life. A strong impression helps you succeed in life.
Like Gosling says, “Be better than the Gap”.
Lesson #3: Details matter
Lesson #4: Attitude and Confidence are everything
Be better than The Gap.