La La Land
The opening song and dance number on a jammed LA Highway exit is breathtaking, and you will be glued to your seat from that very moment.
Whether it wins this year’s Oscar for best picture, you will not see a better film than La La Land. Written and directed by Damien Chazelle, who is coming off last year’s hit Whiplash, this movie is creative, daring, funny and powerfully romantic.
The film tells the story of Mia, a struggling actress who accidentally meets Sebastian, a jazz musician who keeps knocking on his own professional doors hoping that one will eventually open. They both have hopes and dreams as they struggle to make sense out of a Hollywood landscape that keeps telling them no.
Mr. Chazelle’s film brings magic to the screen as you watch Mia and Sebastian gradually fall in love. It is here that the film resembles an old Gene Kelly or Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movie as you watch ebullient song and dance numbers reflect the magnetism drawing two young lovers together.
The dance scenes are magnificent, and the performances of Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling as our young couple are shatteringly seductive. They end up dancing amongst the stars in a planetarium and on the edge of a cliff overlooking Hollywood, and they bring love alive in a tantalizing fashion.
Yet both Mia and Sebastian have professional goals that threaten the possibility of a lasting relationship, and it is here that your heart breaks as you root for them to somehow build a bridge to the future. It leads to an ending that will bring a smile to your face and tears to your eyes.
This is a film that deserves multiple awards at Oscar time. On top of that, Ms. Stone’s attire is as sexy as it is attractive, and it is doubtful that any woman will find fault with Mr. Gosling’s Sebastian wearing the exact same shoes in every scene.
Love remains a very splendid thing.