Movie Review: Damien Chazelle’s ‘La La Land’ Starring Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling

La La Land Review

Damien Chazelle (Whiplash), the writer and director of La La Land, deserves a big, huge heaping of praise. There hasn’t been a new film musical in a while and what he’s done is a definite achievement. His La La Land is a beautiful portrait of colors and bright city lights and people determined to make their mark in the world.

The original music is catchy, the story timely and the stars, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, are in an acting sense, perfect.

Except…. they aren’t the best singers or dancers. Which is, you know, essential in a musical.

What makes their lack of triple-threatness even more glaring is that they are surrounded by a cast of supporting actors that can sing their socks off.

The film opens on a highway in Los Angeles, where dozens of people are stuck in their cars from a traffic jam. As expected, we get an incredibly fun opening number where everyone gets out of their cars, singing and dancing. The segment, with its high energy and one take shot, ranks up there with opening movie musical numbers.

After that, except for one cute number with Mia’s roommates, it’s mostly Stone and Gosling and their sing-talking. They do fine, don’t get me wrong. But there’s no numbers with any belts. Those numbers where you sing them in the shower or car. A number where you sing at the top of your lungs like no one is watching and feel alive.

The story follows Mia (Stone), an aspiring actress who, in between humiliating auditions, works at a coffee shop in a major Hollywood studio while jazz musician Sebastian (Gosling) spends his nights working as a piano player in a restaurant. The two eventually meet (in a very “meet cute” way) and fall in love but as they both become successful, that success begins to pull them apart.

The movie is likeable and funny, yet extremely frustrating. Hey, it’s about pursuing your dreams in LA! Something, if you’re reading this site, we can all relate to. I just wish the stars had a belt or two in their pockets.

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/jason-bateman-ozark.jpg
Jason Bateman Thinks He’s the “Worst” When Directing Other Actors
"I'm assuming they're doing the best job they can. I'm assuming that they're playing the part the way they want to play it." - Jason Bateman
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/michael-stuhlbarg-shape-of-water.jpg
Michael Stuhlbarg: ” I don’t know if I’ve ever played someone who I’ve had absolute contempt for”
"Sometimes the work can be so hard that you have to remind yourself why you took the job in the first place" - Michael Stuhlbarg
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/alicia-silverstone-killing-of-a-sacred-deer.jpg
Alicia Silverstone on ‘The Killing of a Sacred Deer’ and Working on Broadway
"My agent called and said, 'You need to go on this thing. It’s worth it. You should start preparing immediately" - Alicia Silverstone
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/denzel-washington-roman-j-israel-esq.jpg
Denzel Washington on ‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ and Why He Keeps Coming Back to Broadway
"I’m interested in different challenges, and challenging myself and just trying to get better." - Denzel Washington
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/chadwick-boseman-black-panther.jpg
Chadwick Boseman on Playing Black Panther: “I love him because the fantasy of playing a ruler – you never get to do that”
Boseman talks about portraying T'Challa's unique background on screen.