I will admit that this post is coming to you a day late. A whistle stop trip to Leeds on Monday and Tuesday for my exam, followed by what became a not-so-great Wednesday with a rather unpleasant migraine, meant that I was forced to delay this post until now.
Fortunately, I am currently sat at my desk with some tea, in a mug covered in a variety of fighter planes, which undoubtedly belongs to my dad, ready to write. If I was organised enough, I might have done a post yesterday morning before my head decided to annoy me, but I had been looking forward to watching, and reviewing La La Land for so long, that I wanted this to be my next post.
As soon as the trailer came out for La La Land, I was hooked by this interesting film. Set in the modern day, yet oozing classic Hollywood glamour, this charming musical, which is definitely Oscar-worthy, has achieved an incredible feat as it has become a box office hit without being the typical blockbuster with superheroes and explosions.
Yet, at the same time, La La Land is not some happy clappy, cheesy walking on sunshine musical either. It is not without the joyous group numbers though. The opening scene is an absolute delight. I think life would be so much better if everyone stopped their cars and started dancing and singing in the sunshine.
What makes the film truly magical is the performances by Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, but also the cinematography and pure style.
Yes, the cars and mobile phones are modern, but that is where it ends. The film takes you through the Hollywood eras, transporting you to another world. Scenes from the jazz cafes and bars ring true of the 1920s, yet at the same time the costumes and party scenes are something from the 50s and 60s. These changes of scenery are captivating in themselves.
The chemistry between the lead actors is wonderful. It feels like you are not watching two people acting because it is just so natural. I think La La Land is also very clever as Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling are not completely perfect singers and dancers. Of course, they are still really good, but it somehow seems more real and honest with them not being professionals.
I have to give credit to Ryan Gosling. His piano playing is outstanding and it shows true devotion to your craft when you spend six months learning jazz piano. If you do not have time to see La La Land, at least listen to his piano playing, or indeed Emma Stone’s solo performance in her audition which is a tear-jerker.
Another reason that La La Land stood out for me was the ending. Final scenes of films are so predictable these days. It was almost refreshing that it did not end the way most people would probably want. The fact that Mia and Sebastian are not together again seems more honest. However, the dream sequence when they are together gives hope and still puts a smile on your face. If you have a good enough imagination, then who knows, maybe that was what actually happened. Nevertheless, a perfect film for the realists and the romanticists.