Film re­view

TV3’s movie ex­pert Kate Rodger holds onto her seat as this fast-paced, car-chase-laden, cops and rob­bers drama plays across the screen.

Australian Women’s Weekly NZ - - ON SCREEN -

From the get-go we know we’re in for a ride.

Baby Driver Star­ring Ansel El­gort, John Hamm, Kevin Spacey, Lily James and Jamie Foxx. Writ­ten and di­rected by Edgar Wright.

I’m not go­ing to lie, Baby Driver is a con­fus­ing ti­tle. What ex­actly IS this new Edgar Wright movie? And why should you see it im­me­di­ately? How about I start the ball rolling and de­scribe Baby Driver as a mu­si­cal heist car-chase love story?

We could say it’s La La Land with­out the singing and danc­ing and with­out Ryan Gosling. It’s Drive with­out the bru­tal head-bash­ing in the el­e­va­tor and with­out Ryan Gosling. It’s Fast and Fu­ri­ous with­out the need for a frontal lo­bot­omy and with­out Vin Diesel. And it’s Heat set to mu­sic.

I’m not sure I’ve helped much, but please know this: there are a gazil­lion rea­sons to go and see Baby Driver, so al­low me to break it down to a five-shift gear-box worth.

From the get-go we know we’re in for a ride. Baby is a get­away driver. As soon as the bevy of bank rob­bers burst from the back seat armed to the teeth and strid­ing across the road in per­fect uni­son, we know. They’re mov­ing to the beat of their own drum, to the beat of Wright’s hand-crafted and lov­ingly cu­rated col­lec­tion of cracker tunes and into the box of­fice in what will un­doubt­edly be one of the best movies of the year. As we fall in love with Baby, Baby falls in love with diner wait­ress Deb­ora. And when things start to go very much awry, as we know they will, Baby must make some big choices.

The cast here is top-notch. Ansel El­gort (The Fault in our Stars/Di­ver­gent) is Baby, Baby Driver. Kevin Spacey (House of Cards/ The Usual Sus­pects) is Doc. Doc owns him, and Baby wants out. Lily James (Down­ton Abbey/Cin­derella) is Deb­ora, and Baby’s heart be­longs to Deb­ora. Ev­ery­one from John Hamm (Mad Men/Brides­maids) to Jon Bern­thal (The Ac­coun­tant/Si­cario) to Jamie Foxx (Ray/Col­lat­eral) are bad-ass bank rob­bers, some bad­der than others.

Now please don’t be put off by this, but this is foot-to-the-floor, high-oc­tane, top gear car chase heaven. All set to the best “On the Road” playlist known to mankind. Squeal­ing, smok­ing tyres, hand-break 180s/360s, in­sane cops-chase­crim­i­nals from free­way to the fast lane to the wrecker’s yard. Max­i­mum ac­cel­er­a­tion for max­i­mum ex­hil­a­ra­tion, and I loved it.

The script it­self is drip­ping with enough quotable quotes to keep even the most quotable of the quote-hun­gry equipped un­til the end of time, even more so for the hard-core cinephile and muso among you. It’s a story that ac­tu­ally keeps you guess­ing with­out sec­ond-guess­ing your guess­ing, with enough heart to warm your own, and enough hi­lar­ity amidst the car-nage to keep the laugh­ing gear well­lu­bri­cated. It’s the most fun

I’ve had in a cinema all year.

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