Monday, June 5, 2017

Movie review: La La Land

Sebastian is a pianist obsessed with jazz and focused on fame when he meets and falls in love with aspiring actress Mia. As the two pursue their dreams, their relationship becomes strained forcing them to make some tough choices.

Ryan Gosling (Sebastian), Emma Stone (Mia), Amiee Conn (Famous Actress), Terry Walters (Linda), Callie Hernandez (Tracy), Jessica Rothe (Alexis), Sonoya Mizuno (Caitlin), J.K. Simmons (Bill).

La La Land is a rather simple love story with a familiar plot and the requisite emotional struggles felt by the young lovers, Sebastian and Mia. How the story is told is the interesting part of this film. With a nod to nostalgia and 50's musicals, La La Land updates the musical genre leaving us with a feeling of current relevancy. Not a musical fan myself, I have to give this one props. The musical scenes felt relevant and contained rather than never ending and rambling, as in some other musicals, while helping to move the story along and adding nice depth.

Acting was enjoyable with Gosling and Stone both doing quite well, as well as working nicely together. Both also seemed to do well with song and dance numbers. The remainder of the cast was solid, delivered well, and again seemed to do nicely with the choreographed musical interludes.

Camera work, sets, and backgrounds were simple and somewhat plain, but fit the film genre well. Musical numbers were well done with enjoyable music, singing, and choreography. Dialogue was good and supported well by the song and dance numbers. Sound and soundtrack were well done.

Despite not being a musical fan, La La Land was an enjoyable film with a solid storyline and enjoyable technical work. Genre fans should enjoy this one, as will those that like a good romantic drama.

With only some mild foul language, this should be fine for teens and above.

Released: 2016
Reviewed: 5.19.17
Star rating: 3 out of 5
Genre: Musicals, Romantic Drama, Showbiz Musical, Romantic Musical

copyright ©2017 Dave Riedel

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