By Mario Ricciardi
This past summer we saw the big screen debut of “Wonder Woman,” not one, but two new Marvel movies, a new film by Christopher Nolan released in 70mm and a B.A. female take on everything James Bond is about. Describing the past summer movie season can cumulate into one word: epic. Even the new “Transformers” was epically awful.
With all those films to choose from, most would have a hard time picking a favorite. Although I understand the indecisiveness of others, I have concluded firmly that one particular film has earned its spot as my favorite movie of the summer of 2017. That movie is a little film going by the title of “Baby Driver.”
Written and directed by visionary (and audio-ary? If that’s a word) Edgar Wright, starring Ansel Elgort, Lily James, Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx and Kevin Spacey. In it we find the story of a young getaway driver, mixed in with the wrong people, tasked with performing one final heist that’s destined to fail.
Along the way we get romance, comedy, drama and a killer soundtrack that goes down easy like Sunday morning. “Baby Driver” stood apart this summer as one of the few films that refused to use CGI to facelift its action.
With car stunts worthy of the “Fast and Furious” franchise being executed with nothing more than a stunt driver, 150 Subarus and some airbags, “Baby Driver” showed off some of the most daring and exciting action sequences all summer.
Assisting the stunting cars is a soundtrack that blends R&B, hip hop, alternative tracks and oldies-but-goodies that turned the film into cinema’s most untraditional musical. Edgar Wright’s electric style of filmmaking is pushed to a new level in “Baby Driver” showing us why he earned a degree in audio-visual design.
The editing is fast-paced and engaging, the cinematography innovative and watching the film is like understanding a new language. Complaints in regards to the plot of “Baby Driver” failing to bring something gritty, or boundary pushing to meet the culture’s standard should be pushed aside.
“Baby Driver” is an art film disguised as a blockbuster. It makes itself easily accessible to those who prefer a little more action than movie in their action movies, but at the same time it asks that audience to raise their standard for smarter movies.
Thanks to its unique flare and honest performances from an A-list cast, “Baby Driver” has every right to be pretentious, but it refuses it for maximum, full-throttle, enjoyment absolutely deserving of a viewing. Just make sure you keep the volume up.