Verdict: A story of love with music, dance, and all that jazz.
If you’re tired of watching the same old love stories, here’s something different for you. The same old love story, shown in a unique new way. It has the love, and the dreams, but it also has dance, music, and more importantly, jazz. Damien Chazelle’s last film, Whiplash, took us on a wonderful journey of jazz music, while exploring a teacher-student relationship. In his new film, La La Land, Chazelle once again gives us a taste of the dying genre of music, only this time, with a story about love and dreams. The film is based in Los Angeles, yet unlike most Hollywood movies, La La Land shows us a different kind of LA, one which is more vibrant, diverse, and dreamlike.
La La Land tells us the story of two ambitious artists– Mia (Emma Stone), a struggling actress, working in a coffee shop to make ends meet, and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a pianist trying to hold on to the last shreds of dying jazz music. The two often run into each other, and soon fall in love. Both aspiring artists in their own way, they support each other to follow their dreams. While Mia is left disheartened after a string of unsuccessful auditions, Sebastian encourages her to act in a play of her own making. In turn, Mia invigorates Sebastian’s passion of opening his own jazz club. But the road to success has many roadblocks, and the young couple begin to feel the strain of these blocks, leading them further apart. To make things worse, Mia’s play fails, and Sebastian is stuck playing for a band he doesn’t like. But there is hope on the horizon, and their dreams can come true, only if they give up on love.
If you have seen the trailer of this film, you can tell that it is going to be a visual treat. But that barely does justice to the stunning cinematography and special effects added to the film. It is not only a treat for the eyes, but also the ears, with its use of pleasant jazz music and lovely musical numbers. Songs like A Lovely Night and City of Stars will put you in a great mood, but it’s the theme song that stays with you. Last of all, the film touches the heart. This is not your typical happily-ever-after love story. It shows the struggle and sacrifices involved in fulfilling one’s dreams, in the most realistic manner, even with its dreamlike theme. Seasons play an important role in the narrative, metaphorizing the stages of a relationship. After every winter comes a glowing summer, and life works in the same way, too.
The actors, who have previously worked together in more than one film, share brilliant chemistry. Ryan Gosling showed us this year that he can be incredibly funny (The Nice Guys), and in La La Land, he shows that he can also be amazingly charming. You simply cannot peel your eyes off him, as he plays the piano with the passion of a jazz lover. But his performance is overshadowed by the always-glowing Emma Stone. The actress adds a charm of her own to the movie, as she does an incredible job in her three roles – the waitress, the actor, and the movie star. Miss Stone is certainly the one to look out for in the coming Awards season.
Why You Should Watch This Movie:
The film is a piece of beauty. If you have watched Whiplash, you know that Chazelle does justice to music and his actors. Emma and Ryan will take you on an audio-visual trip that will leave you humming some heartwarming jazz numbers by the end.