I was fortunate enough to see an advance screening of Baby Driver, which is Edgar Wright’s newest film. The trailers for the film were fast and fun, so I went into it expecting to be thoroughly entertained with some of Edgar Wright’s flare sprinkled throughout. While I did have a great time with this film, it just might be my least favorite of Edgar’s films.
The moment you catch feelings is the moment you catch a bullet.
If you are wondering whether this film is bad, I will state outright that it is not. This is a good film, it just suffers from a weak third act, but more on that later. The first two acts of this film are an absolute joy. The film starts off with a bang where Ansel Elgort’s Baby is jamming out to some music while waiting to drive away from a crime. In many ways this entire opening sequence perfectly encapsulates what this film is: a lot of fun with some dramatic moments and a fantastic soundtrack. Since I mentioned the soundtrack, I will go on to say that I love how the music is used in this film. It becomes a character because of how the way the film matches up to the musical beats. This is done through the film’s editing, as well as, through the actor’s own movements.
Music is not just important to the film, but it is important to the titular character Baby. Ever since The Fault in Our Stars I have not been a big fan of Ansel Elgort. He exudes a sort of pretentious attitude which I always found off-putting. However, in this film I became more of a fan of the young actor. He brings so much energy and physicality to his role. I was also impressed by how well he handled Wright’s dialogue, as well as quieter moments where he had to rely on facial acting. The rest of the cast is also quite great. The standouts for me are: Jamie Foxx and Jon Hamm. Both were often quite funny but also so menacing when they had to be. Which brings me to my next point: this film is quite funny but also occasionally menacing. Edgar Wright is known for being an expert in blending comedy with legitimate drama, and this film is no exception. A scene may start off fairly light but by the end it may take a dark and dramatic turn, which was truly exciting to see.
They call; I go. You know?
The film does suffer from several problems, the first being Baby’s relationship with Deborah. I never quite bought their relationship because it felt very rushed. I never understood why they liked each other, and in the end I found myself not invested in whether or not they stay together.
The second, and most important, problem with this film is the third act. During this act I felt like character changed their motivations for no reason, and everything felt more telegraphed than before. I was on the edge of my seat for most of the first and second acts, but all of a sudden I began to lose interest in what was going on screen. There were a few nice twists and turns sprinkled throughout, but nothing worthwhile that made me forgive the sloppiness of the film’s finale.
Despite a weak finish and a weak romance, this is a great time at the cinema. There are plenty of laughs to be had, and even plenty of moments with dramatic heft. If you are a fan of Edgar Wright I am sure you will not be disappointed, and you should definitely check out this flick.