Here’s a life hack, only see La La Land with the willing. It isn’t for everyone. Spiteful message boards have complaints about clunky dancing, pitchy singers, and generic plots. Those are valid opinions for angry, soulless trolls. La La Land is only for fun-loving people who enjoy sunshine and saturated, jewel-toned clothing. I also highly recommend seeing it with some elderly ladies seated behind you. Nothing can squash the angry trolls like adorable septuagenarians.
La La Land follows Mia and Sebastian, two people with fancy Hollywood names, who are destined to be together. Mia is an aspiring actress. Sebastian is a jazz snob. Together they paint a more hopeful picture of what it is like to live in Hollywood. The moment you fall in love with the movie will be different than mine, but at some point you will realize you are totally smitten with La La Land. Hopefully when you do, there will be a few swooning grandmas behind you.
ðŸ’Ÿ: The Opening Scene
The opening scene was oversold to me. I was expecting too much. I thought it would be brighter, shinier . In reality, it was a little bit more dull. Some of the colors looked like a bright shirt that had a few too many washes. I went into the the beginning of the movie with the eyes of a pessimist. At one point, the music builds to a big, beautiful Broadway dance number. I needed that moment. Finally, I stopped worrying about the structural integrity of the hoods of the cars and dancer’s doomed from too enthusiastic jazz hands. I could just enjoy the song for what it was–good, clean fun. As they sing about having “Another Day of Sun” and I trudge through this winter, it is easy to identify the intended tone. We are here to watch dancers dance and singers sing. Nothing to overthink here.
ðŸ’Ÿ:Ryan Gosling plays Noah from The Notebook
I wouldn’t be surprised if someone said that the character of Sebastian is fan fiction from The Notebook. Sebastian is Noah Calhoun all over again. Both characters have similar wardrobes, mannerisms and the ability to be charming, selfish and agitated all at the same time. Gosling is in need of a headband for about 75% of the movie. As a visual, that wisp of hair is infuriating. (Don’t even get me started on his large ring) But, throughout the the film, you’ll find yourself enamored with Gosling. If you wished there was a The Notebook 2: The Final Chapters, then you will love La La Land.
ðŸ’Ÿ:Emma Stone plays Emma Stone from real life
I’m positive that Emma Stone is playing Emma Stone in the movie. She seems to be the same confident and quirky person that she is in interviews. I am self aware enough to know that I am often easily duped by Hollywood into thinking that all performers are as interesting as the characters they portray. In this case, Emma Stone playing the part of Mia inspired by Emma is the exception that proves the rule.
ðŸ’Ÿ:The Audition Song
By the time Mia finally gets the audition she deserves, you’re ready. It is a perfectly timed moment. Every part of the scene is satisfying. Stone’s over sized sleeves make her seem insecure. Her declaration that “that’s why they need us!” makes her seem confident, and rightfully so. As an audience member, I was ready to go to war for Mia if those forgettable casting directors didn’t give her the part. I wish that I could scrub the part of my brain that has the chorus of Frozen forever embedded in it. I would substitute that garbage with these lines, “Here’s to the hearts that ache. Here’s to the mess we make.” I think we would all be better off if we were always saluting the dreamers instead of “let it go.” If we are honest with ourselves, the cold always bothers us anyway.
ðŸ’Ÿ: The Ending
The ending of La La Land should remain a surprise for anyone who hasn’t seen it. I look forward to watching it again when I can sit back and relax. There will be some comfort in knowing that they get the ending right. No need for anxiety.
ðŸ’Ÿ:The La La Land Hangover
Sometimes after you see a movie, there is a hangover that lingers for days. For example, watching The Fast & the Furious has a definite affect on your safe driving habits. Likewise, La La Land will influence your outlook on life. Miraculously, as you unload the dishwasher, you will find yourself dancing with pointed toes and holding angular poses with your arms. If you are the type of person suited for La La Land, you will spend the subsequent week posed like an origami crane. There are worse movies to be under the influence. It is just the bit of madness that is needed.