8:45 pm EDT, July 3, 2017

‘Baby Driver’ movie review: A stylish and exciting ride

From writer/director Edgar Wright, Baby Driver is masterfully crafted and filled with fun, non-stop action.

Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a getaway driver, notorious for his incredible skill behind the wheel and for always listening to music while working for the heist kingpin Doc (Kevin Spacey). While Baby is only working for Doc to pay off a debt, Doc considers him to be his good luck charm among his rotating team of robbers (which includes Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx, Jon Bernthal, and Eiza Gonzalez). When Baby meets a waitress, Debora (Lily James), he dreams of running away with her from his life of crime, but ends up getting pulled into another heist.

For a heist movie, Baby Driver is virtually perfect. Sure, it is missing significant character development and major emotional stakes, but that does not matter for this kind of film. Either way, Baby Driver is too exciting to even notice this.

Wright perfectly builds excitement throughout the film. This is through the heart-pumping action of the car chases and the suspense in between heists. The excitement is balanced with the sweet hopefulness of Baby’s relationship with Debora.

Pure action movies can often be terrible, but Baby Driver is different. This largely comes from the shooting style, turning the movie more into a work of art, rather than a mindless blockbuster.

Music is integral to Baby Driver’s success. Every single image was planned perfectly to time it with the music. Wright’s masterful direction makes the flow of images melodious. Every visual is intentional, and helps to drive the action and the story.

Paired with the fantastic cinematography is engaging dialogue. Not only does much of the dialogue have Wright’s special flair of comedy, but also it takes on a lyrical quality to match the wonderful soundtrack.

Impressively, Elgort has shown significant growth from his previous roles, and is able to carry the movie as Baby. He still makes the character interesting, despite the fact that Baby does not speak often nor is he very expressive. Elgort makes the character even more entertaining to watch, especially when Baby comes alive as he listens to music.

The team of robbers has equally fantastic performances, even with their less significant screen time. Each of the characters could have easily been turned into a caricature or they could have been blended together, especially with their simple yet descriptive monikers, but each feels unique. They all have enough dimension to be interesting and even sympathetic.

Baby Driver redefines the concept of a summer blockbuster, making a movie that is both extremely enjoyable and creative.

Grade: A

‘Baby Driver’ opened in theaters June 28, 2017

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