Tuesday, January 17, 2017

And now, just for fun, I am going to write a review of the new and already fabled movie, LA LA LAND, which I saw last night.
First, I liked it. I can see what all the hoopla is about. Emma Stone is dazzling. Not only is she beautiful, but she has a voice like an angel, and when she dances, it's like she is weightless and floating in the ether. And Ryan Gosling can really play the piano. It's really him playing it in the movie. I looked it up. And the theme song of the movie, which is also their love song, is entitled CITY OF STARS, and it is an exquisitely lovely song. And keep in mind that I am an Oldies guy. I rarely like new music. But, I like this song. In fact, I like it so much, I just may end up recording it myself. So beware. Don't say I didn't warn you.
The other songs in the movie are lively and energetic and fitting for the scenes, but not nearly as memorable as CITY OF STARS.
The movie also includes a lot of pure instrumental jazz, of high-caliber. But, I can't say I have a good ear for that kind of music. I can enjoy it, but in small doses.
As for the story, it's a love story, where they fall in love with each other, but they are also in love with their careers as performers, him as a jazz pianist and her as an actress. And that leads to problems. I won't tell you how it ends, but you don't doubt their sincerity either way, and the ending is very touching and emotional.
There is an "other-world" quality to this movie throughout. It's happening in Los Angeles and presumably in modern time, but to me, it came across as anothert dimension. Perhaps I'm saying that because there is fantastical stuff that happens, such as them suddenly ascending into space and dancing among the stars.
Also, there is really no character development except the two of them. For instance, at one point, out of frustration, she gives up and goes home to her parents, and he goes out there and pulls her back. But, you never see or hear from her parents. Everyone else in the story is just a prop.
So, for me, it gives the story a surreal quality that I think prevented me from getting as fully immersed in it, as I would have otherwise, and as I have with other movies. But, maybe that's just me. Your mileage may vary.
So, if this were Amazon, and I was rating La La Land on a scale of 1 to 5, I would give it 4 stars. But, keep in mind that I am a very tough movie critic, So 4 stars from me is impressive.
So, I am recommending La La Land because of the talent of its stars, the beautiful theme song, and the fresh, original way they achieved poignancy at the end. That's a lot to like.

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