Comedy | Drama | Musical | Romance
Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend, Rosemarie DeWitt, Finn Wittrock, Jessica Rothe, Sonoya Mizuno, Callie Hernandez, J.K. Simmons, Tom Everett Scott, Meagen Fay, Damon Gupton, Jason Fuchs, Josh Pence
Mia (Emma Stone), an aspiring actress, and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, meet while pursuing their dreams in a city known for destroying hopes.
I am one of those people who were super excited about "La La Land" even before knowing what it was about. Damien Chazelle, the director of "Whiplash", a movie I deeply love, and the leading duo, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, two talented actors with a wonderful chemistry, were enough for me. Then the movie turned out to be a musical, and I don't do musicals, but I still had faith in it. Then it was tremendously acclaimed both from critics and audiences and that only increased my expectations. And after so much waiting, I can finally say that it did leave up to the hype.
"La La Land" is not just a musical. It is not just a film. It is a spectacular cinematic experience. It is an extraordinary and moving love letter to Hollywood. It is a charming and inspiring work of art.
With this film, Damien Chazelle proves yet again what a great filmmaker he is, triumphing in both direction and writing. His brilliant script features a fantastic, unique and inspiring story that focuses on the two main characters, leaving the side plots to the sides, like they are supposed to, and that looks like the typical romance but evolves into something larger than life.
Chazelle tells yet again a story about following your dreams that unfortunately cannot be shared with anyone, not even with that person that supported us while pursuing our dreams. He says yet again to never give up on your dreams, but he also shows the downsides to that.
And he makes a remarkable use of the camera, giving meaning to every single shot, and making each one of them incredibly stimulating, not only for the eyes, but for all the senses. He takes a modern and dirty Los Angeles, and makes it feel retro using a stunning, abstract cinematography by Linus Sandgren that evokes Woody Allen's "Manhattan".
And just like any great film, "La La Land" also features a score that is simply perfect. It doesn't just accompany the film, but it's actually an integral part in transforming a simple night at the movie theater into an astonishing experience. Same goes with the musical numbers. Chazelle and his talented creative team delivered stunning numbers from the very beginning, with a opening sequence set on a Los Angeles freeway that took my breath away and put a huge smile on my face.
Then of course there's the cast. I don't think words are enough to describe the magnificence both of Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling's performances and their talents. They act, they sing, they dance, and they excel in all of them. Neither of them has a fantastic singing voice, but that's what makes their performances even more enchanting. And the chemistry these two have, well it is simply perfect.
I don't know when it's the last time I was this invested into a film. Or when I felt the need to rewatch a film as soon as the credits ended.