At The Movies
La La Land
Director: Damien Chazelle
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend, Rosemarie DeWitt
I don’t know about you but for me, sometimes it’s nice to just watch a movie and forget about all your problems for a couple of hours…. the kind of film that just makes you feel good about the world again. So with 2016 being one of the crappiest years on record it’s somewhat fitting that a film as sweet and innocent as La La Land has been released to give us a dose of feel good factor that we desperately need.
The film itself is a musical set in modern day Los Angeles. The two main characters are Mia, an actress and Seb, a musician, a couple of dreamers who’s careers aren’t exactly going to plan. Both the characters have talent, but neither have found their big break. They meet and through a series of song and dance numbers we witness the development of their relationship as well as their careers as they try to succeed in a world that doesn’t seem to have time for either of their dreams.
The acting in this movie is great – Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling are a perfect fit for a couple of slightly dorky, slightly obsessed artists and the fact that they aren’t the best singers or dancers in the world actually makes the whole thing seem even more realistic. A couple of big musical numbers with a full cast of singers and dancers is enough to get your toes tapping in your seat, but it’s the solo performances and duets by the two main characters that really make the film what it is. The filmmakers haven’t piled on the schmaltz like the romances in films like Love Actually – The film seems to have struck on that golden formula; genuinely likeable characters that the audience wants to see succeed. A word of warning; you will fall in love with one or possibly both of these characters before the end of the movie!
This film is an excellent throwback to the old feel good musicals of the 1950’s but with enough modern twists to keep contemporary cinemagoers happy. I really can’t recommend it highly enough.