#19 – Baby Driver (2017)

Baby Driver

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Written & directed by:  Edgar Wright

Starring:

Ansel Elgort

Kevin Spacey

Lily James

Jon Hamm

Jamie Foxx

 

 

 

Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, Spaced. This man has a lot to live up to and let me tell you he’s ramped his game RIGHT up! If you’ve seen any of Edgar Wright’s work then you’ll know he has a certain style of directing and in this film he’s gone full whack with it! It’s his most rhythmically charged film yet. By far his best piece of art outside of the ‘Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy‘.

 

Firstly, let me say the trailer for this film doesn’t do it justice. The trailer doesn’t tell you anything about the film because there’s not much to tell. It’s really a film you just have to take a risk with and see without letting the trailer decide for you.

I’d tell you what the plot is or at least try and give an overview but it’s too vague to give you even a smallest image of it in your mind’s eye. Let’s just say it has some incredible car chases, a SOLID soundtrack (better than Guardians of the Galaxy Vols. 1 & 2) and is acted by a strong cast.

 

This movie is really led by the music. Nearly every action played out in most scenes (in-fact probably EVERY scene) slides into the rhythm of whatever song is playing in the background. It’s a really interesting style and one I’ve not seen done throughout an ENTIRE film before. At first you think the whole ‘movie-working-in-the-same-rhythm-as-the-soundtrack’ will get annoying but stick with it. You eventually step in-line to the movie’s beat and you find yourself immersed in an almost ‘operatic, action movie’.

Music fanatics, musicians and people who generally keep their earphones plugged into their ears and listen to music all day every day are really going to relate to this film. You’ll find your toe tapping throughout. During the sequence led by the Queen song ‘Brighton Rock’, I found myself sitting forward in my chair as I just couldn’t sit back during a Queen song played on surround sound!

The sequence to ‘Brighton Rock’ (which I’m assuming is Edgar Wright’s favourite Queen song 😉 ) is fantastic! The music is actually the main character in this movie as there’s no real leading ‘protagonist’. But, all the actors sharing the headline slot so to speak, really works! It’s truly an ensemble piece. The actors support the soundtrack. No-one steals the show except maybe Jamie Foxx (but that’s the only way he’ll ever keep getting acting jobs).

 

If there was a criticism for this movie it would be against Ansel Elgort encapsulation of his character ‘Baby’. When he starts dancing around and miming to songs it gets a bit cringe-worthy and the actor doesn’t look comfortable in what he’s doing, especially as he’s supposed to be a bit of a wallflower. You’re also not sure how old he’s supposed to be as there is a reference to him ‘pulling off a job’ in 1985 when he only looks about 20 years old! It could just have been bullshit said by the leader of the crew trying to impress the other members of the group. But then there’s flashbacks to his childhood and they make it look very 70’s but then he’s given an ipod for his birthday as a child.. I felt they could have chosen a slightly more dynamic actor to play ‘Baby’. I get he can’t be too dynamic as the ‘thing’ about the character is that he’s mysterious but as I said, the actor looks uncomfortable when he’s supposed to come out of his shell. It reminded me of the moments in Spider-Man 3 when Tobey Maguire is playing as the ‘evil Spidey’!

 

 

But that’s my only criticism of the movie. I went into it not knowing what the hell to expect as, like I said, the trailer gave NOTHING away. But like I said, there’s nothing to give away. But it’s not one of those films you’ll watch once every 6 months because the plot is ‘boring’. The soundtrack, action sequences and the BRILLIANT humour, which really comes out of nowhere sometimes in a BRILLIANT way (there’s a hilarious Mike Myers joke), just keeps this movie flying!

 

 

My Rating – 8/10  |  IMDB – 8.5/10  |  Rotten Tomatoes – 100%

 

 

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