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.
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.