2017. Directed by Edgar Wright.
Wow. Like holy shit, wow. Ok, I was excited to see this one. I counted down the days for Baby Driver, the new movie from Edgar Wright (look him up, the guy rules), and locked in a preview screening at the Norwood cinema a week before the general release. As an added bonus, every ticket came with a pair of Baby Driver headphones! And then the movie happened.
It was good, baby, it was real good. Like Wright’s previous films, Baby Driver plays out like a joyful love letter to cinema, celebrating its chosen genre (this time the heist movie), while serving up its own story and delightful characters. This time around, it’s also a love letter to music, as we’re introduced to Baby (the handsomely charismatic Ansel Elgort), who lives his life almost permanently plugged in to his iPod, giving us the pumping soundtrack that the movie drives by. It’s deliriously enjoyable from its opening moments as Baby, ready at the wheel while the bank robbery takes place across the street, taps and sings along to the Jon Spencer Blues Explosions’ Bellbottoms, before thrusting the car full throttle in the first of many car chase sequences.
He may be the best getaway driver that crime boss Doc (Kevin Spacey doing Kevin Spacey) has ever seen, but Baby has a heart of gold. Forced behind the wheel to pay off an old debt, Baby becomes determined to find a way out when he meets Debora and the two plan on leaving town together. But getting out isn’t easy. As Bats puts it, “the moment you catch feelings, is the moment you catch a bullet.”
Baby Driver excels at giving us some of the best adrenaline pumping action sequences I’ve seen in the cinema since Mad Max Fury Road, and it really shines when giving us time with its superbly dynamic supporting cast. Buddy and Darling (Jon Hamm and Eliza Gonzalez, having a blast with the material) are cool as hell lovers turned bank robbers on the run, and I dream of the day that we get a spin off movie about them. Jamie Foxx is the menacing and unpredictable Bats, and I wish we’d got more of Jon Bernthal’s deliciously despicable Griff. I loved seeing Flea pop as Eddie, but my favourite has to be Lanny Joon’s scene stealing, tattoo regretting, Halloween mask confusing, JD. I’m praying to the movie gods that Joon and Wright can team up again soon, and next time give him a bigger role.
I only wish I’d cared more about the central characters. Baby and Deborah aren’t at all bad, they just don’t score that special place in my heart as previous Edgar Wright creations. For me, his films had always placed characters of such truth and honesty within the over the top genres, and I feel this is missing here. Or maybe, over time and with more viewings, Baby will grow on me and for now I’m just being stubborn with my devotion to Simon Pegg. Time will tell.
See it loud and see it on the big screen, you’re in for a wild ride.
Baby Driver is out now at your local cinema!
- movie man about adelaide -