Baby Driver (2017)

Baby Driver is the kind of action movie I’ve been missing.  The genre usually seems so tired and repetitive, and this is something new.  While the ‘get the girl and get out’ theme is nothing original, the musical backdrop and the tireless commitment to rhythm definitely are.

I wasn’t expecting to love this movie.  I wasn’t even convinced that I’d like it.  The trailer didn’t sell me on it, but… hey, it’s got Kevin Spacey in it, and I’ve liked Edgar Wright’s other movies.  What’s not to try?

Well – I’m really glad I did.  I don’t consider it a spoiler to say that the trailer only really shows you the first five minutes of the film.  By the end of that five-minute sequence, I was already excited.  Where’s it going next, and how?

I’m not a great fan of lead Ansel Elgort, but I have to hand it to him.  I really enjoyed his performance in this movie, and he definitely carried it off.  His chemistry with every single character in the cast was fantastic – but especially with Kevin Spacey as Doc, and CJ Jones as Joseph.  In fact, the entire cast was excellent.  A special gold star to Jamie Foxx as Bats, who is unintentionally hilarious.

That’s the thing with this movie.  Its cast is so charming, and it’s presented in such a stylish way, that I’m willing to forgive its sins.  There are sins, after all.  I don’t understand some of the choices the characters make; they seem arbitrary to push the plot along.  I’m not a huge fan of the central romance, which I feel develops out of nowhere – though I guess I shouldn’t be surprised when this character goes from 0 to 60 so quickly.  Isn’t that his job?  And this is a mainstream action movie.

That’s another complaint I’d make.  I don’t think the marketing of this movie does it any favours.  I was expecting it to be just another action movie, and I don’t see it that way at all.  I almost want to call it Coen Brothers lite.  It’s not quite farcical enough for that – but it’s somewhere in that arena.  Had they advertised it that way, it might have been more honest.

Still, I suppose they do have to try and appeal to as many people as possible – and there’s really nothing about this movie that would disappoint someone expecting Fast and Furious or the like.

To sum it up?  This movie had to win me over, and it did.  Hard.  I’m stubborn enough that I consider that a pretty impressive feat – and I hope to give it a chance to impress me again.  I like to think the second showing will be just as fun as the first.

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