28 July 2017

REVIEW: Baby Driver

Film: Baby Driver
UK Release Date: 27th June 2017
Director: Edgar Wright
Writer: Edgar Wright
Cast: Ansel Elgort, Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx, Eiza Gonzalez, Kevin Spacey, Lily James
Running time: 112 minutes

As avid fans of Edgar Wright's work (I mean Hot Fuzz, Scott Pilgrim.. come on!) we were so very excited to see his latest project on the big screen: Baby Driver, starring Ansel Elgort as the lead.

Official plot:
After being coerced into working for a crime boss, a young getaway driver finds himself taking part in a heist doomed to fail.

I'll keep this review short and sweet, and spoiler free!

It's no secret that Edgar Wright is a film-making genius: from script to editing, cinematography to soundtrack, you are pretty much guaranteed a good experience. Baby Driver is both unique and similar to the director's previous projects: we have elements that fall right into Wright's aesthetic - clever foreshadowing, perfectly coordinated movements, fluid tracking shots and satisfying editing. The film will have you unknowingly holding your breath, tense in your seat - a slight smile tugging at your lips.

Baby Driver is unique to Wright's previous projects in the sense that is more action-driven than character driven, although Baby's character is well established enough to make the film more captivating. Well written characters are vital to action films (especially those based on cars), to provide a bit of escape from the action sequences which can become monotonous if not crafted with more emotional depth. Wright makes for a good action film director because of how he undertakes his characters (still hoping he works on a Marvel film soon, was sad to see him drop from Ant-Man!) - they aren't overshadowed by the heavy action sequences, nor are they simple or by any means 'boring'.

Ansel Elgort absolutely shines in this film, I genuinely believe he was born for this role: a new step in his career which will hopefully launch him into some more equally awesome projects. He brought charm, innocence, and daring to the story with his portrayal of the lead Baby. B. A. B. Y. Baby.

After a traumatic childhood accident which lead to the death of his parents, Baby suffers from Tinnitus, a hearing impairment which he manages by listening to a never-ending list of songs on his many acquired iPods. A talented getaway driver, Baby follows the beat of the music to get the robbers out of sticky situations, and deals with his emotions through his choice of songs. Elgort's real-life musical talent made him a perfect choice for the role (follow him on Instagram and wait for the Instastories - quite the romantic voice), the music reflected in physical movements only an artist could create.
Baby is forced into taking part in dangerous, violent situations to keep his loved ones safe. The character intriguing because of how he flows between the daring, intense driver and the innocent, caring youth (who, despite his job is utterly shocked by the violence his new co-workers inflict). There is a certain darkness that comes out when he or his loved ones are under threat - he becomes quite intimidating - as illustrated in the still above, Elgort perfectly transitions between these two opposites, balancing out the intense, action packed film.

One thing that is absolutely worth mentioning is that we have a film which centres around a character with a hearing impairment, who speaks sign language and can lip read. There are several scenes in the film that wonderfully put this into motion, a reality for many which is simply not represented enough in the film industry. Baby uses his 'disability' to his advantage, turning it into power, a tool, without which his crime boss Doc (Kevin Spacey) wouldn't have a successful business.

Although there are funny moments in Baby Driver, it's not a laugh-out-loud kinda film, so don't expect Hot Fuzz levels of hilarity. The film falls into the action, crime and music genre, not comedy. One of main themes is car chases - but even those who aren't into heavy driving sequences can still find joy in this film - whether that be through the characters or the splash of young love. There are also some killer one-shot sequences and on-foot chase sequences which are thrilling.
That being said, it was very intense but not a tear-jerker: just a good moment of escapism.

So what can you expect from Baby Driver? A good somewhat simple story, made excellent by the use of detailed foreshadowing and a perfect collaborative mix of choreographed shots, cool music, and some damn good editing. Not to mention the talented cast and the compelling Ansel Elgort.

Baby Driver is intense, and clever. Even your passionate film graduate missed out some of the early foreshadowing and cameos - it's worth seeing more than once to acknowledge all the little details, so telling of Wright's artistic talent. Baby Driver is a refreshing summer story that is both aesthetically pleasing and a joy to watch.

Hands down to Edgar Wright - one of our all time fave directors who has absolutely contributed to our deep love of Cinema. I very much hope we get to see him and Elgort team up again soon.

Holly x

*I do not own any of these images*

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