Baby Driver Reviewed
Baby Driver is about a getaway driver named Baby (Ansel Elgrot) whose skill on the road is dependent on the song he is listening to. Baby works for Doc (Kevin Spacey) who uses a different crew for every heist he pulls, except for Baby, who he considers the best. Baby tries to escape his life of crime but gets roped into pulling one final job with a dangerous crew.
The cast Edgar Wright assembles is fantastic. Jamie Foxx and Kevin Spacey are always fun to watch on screen, and Ansel Elgrot has just as much screen presence as he did in The Fault in Our Stars while showing off quite a different range. He shows that he is an up-and-coming actor to watch. The only character who didn't work for me was Jon Hamm as Buddy, and it wasn't even the character so much as the performance. Buddy had so much going on that I'm not sure if Jon Hamm, who I usually love, could fit it all in. Or maybe I hated that his beard was blocking that gorgeous face; it's tough to say.
Baby Driver plays as a stimulant to the eyes, which makes it fun to watch. The special effects, use of color, and even the actors with their performances are all visually appealing. Edgar Wright takes great pride in every frame he shoots. The car chases he crafts are just as interesting as anything in recent memory, and Wright didn’t need to use a tank, submarine, or an aircraft carrier.
The movie’s biggest problem, though, is its narrative. The plot is not clear on what it wants to be, so Wright tries squeezing in everything he can think of. The movie takes moments from Gone in 60 Seconds, The Fast and the Furious, Bonnie and Clyde, borrows ideas from Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, along with the tried and true ‘one last job’ cliché, and tries to string it all together into one story. Maybe Wright is hoping most people won’t notice you are watching three different movies as long as he throws enough cool stuff to look at.
Obviously, the soundtrack to this movie is great. Every track fits perfectly into the scene, with gunshots matching the songs’ down beats. A wide range of artists are featured, from Queen to Danger Mouse to Young MC to Simon and Garfunkel. To be honest, they may have put more work into crafting the perfect soundtrack than any aspect of the movie, especially as hearing and deafness figure in as (yet another) part of the plot.
If you enjoy what Edgar Wright has done with his previous genre movies like Shaun of The Dead, The World’s End, or Scott Pilgrim vs the World, then you’ll probably like what he's doing in Baby Driver. It almost feels like a cult classic in the making, as if the movie is made for the niche audience of people who like fast cars and cool stunts. I just hope there’s an audience that enjoy those types of movies. B+