I went to see Baby Driver the other night with a friend of mine, and yes, I’m lazy and that’s why I’m only writing about it now. Put your judgy eyes away and just read, will ya?
Written and directed by Edgar Wright (the chap who directed Shaun of the Dead and Scott Pilgrim vs the World), Baby Driver is a fast paced crime/action film with a killer score and an array of awesome characters. Rounded out with some quippy dialogue and a winning combination of originality and style, this film pretty much has it all. Baby (Ansel Elgort) is the best getaway driver in the biz, timing everything to the beat of his own personal soundtrack. Kevin Spacey plays Doc; Baby’s suave, shady employer and the crime boss who runs the show. And Lily James plays Debora, the pretty young waitress that captures Baby’s eye.
Honestly, this film had me hooked from the very first scene. Opening to the sound of ‘Bellbottoms’ by John Spencer Blues Explosion, Wright pretty much throws us into the passenger seat of an expertly choreographed getaway after an in-and-out bank robbery. His direction is so smooth and clean, that the scenes flow effortlessly, without the jarring cuts often employed in this kind of film.
Of course, this is only aided by the aforementioned brilliant soundtrack. Each scene is set by the song that plays at the time, and it fits in so well with the dialogue and the action, that you gotta give Wright his credit; the man knows how to capture an audience. I gotta be honest here, I knew none of the songs in the entire film, but each and every one of them just…worked. And it’s a good thing too, because music is what literally drives this film. (geddit?)
But it’s not just the rad tunes that make this film so good. The characters; oh man, the characters. Baby’s moral compass is in stark contrast with the vaguely psychotic Bats (Jamie Foxx) and perpetually moody Griff (Jon Bernthal), who is in turn at odds with the cool, easygoing Buddy (Jon Hammer) and his sassy wife, Darlin’ (Eiza Gonzalez). The characters kind of offset each other, and each one adds something different to the film.
And beneath it all, the promise of young love and the only getaway Baby really wants; the one that will take him out of his life of crime, with Debora and “a car [they] can’t afford, with a plan [they] don’t have.”
Honestly, Baby Driver is one of the coolest films I’ve seen this year. If you like your car chases smooth, your soundtracks funky, and your characters cool, I recommend giving it a look.