Now the most decorated picture in the Golden Globes history, La La Land is cinematic art. It is more than a movie; it speaks to the part of you that wants to be inspired.
The story follows the trials and tribulations of Mia and Sebastian, two self-proclaimed dreamers who form a romantic relationship while trying to make it in Hollywood. Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling two step their way into our hearts with their surprising musical prowess and their ability to ground the dreamy story through superb naturalistic acting.
Directed by Damian Chazelle, from the critically acclaimed Whiplash, this original musical is drenched in old Hollywood glamour. From the cinemascope logo at the beginning of the programme, to the 1940s costume, every detail assists in immersing the audience in Chazelle’s reverie.
La La Land captures a feeling. Hope. Taking you on a rollercoaster of emotions as the leads struggle to unite their dreams and their love.
However, unlike your typical musical, where any trouble in the world can be fixed with a song, at times the façade slips. For example, the audience are jarred when a duet is cut short by a ringing phone.
The subtle costume changes are another stroke of genius for the focussed eye. Mia flits between 1940s vibrant dresses when happy, to jeans and jumpers when sad. Reality continually seeps through the buoyant musical veil, creating a sense of relatability among the far-fetched glitz and glamour.
The music acts almost as a relief to the audience, showing the characters’ exultant highs and debilitating lows through an easily digestible melody. Joyful crescendos and hollow chords emulate what words can’t, making you at one with the movie and the characters’ emotions, but also creating a singular experience as each spectator implies their own reality to the score.
The film is a triumph. Nostalgic, glamorous, bright and heart warming, but most of all human.
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone are not exceptional dancers or singers, but a movie about trying and failing to reach your goals would be a farce if every note was in key, every heel toe, rise and fall and jazz square perfectly performed
La La Land will inspire you and leave you with a renewed sense that you are the lead character in your own life. Prepare to fall in love. This is definitely one for the dreamers.
Photo courtesy of IMDB