La La Land Review – Overrated or a Masterpiece?

David Chazelle’s critically acclaimed musical ‘La La Land’ was by far my most highly anticipated film of 2017, so when my mum and I finally hit up the cinema I could barely contain my excitement.

The film begins with a bright, high energy musical number on a highway as a myriad of enthusiastic, soon to be struggling actors, singers and dancers are stuck in traffic, awaiting entry to the land of hopes and dreamsĀ – Los Angeles. The film was absolutely beautiful, the costuming and sets brought the story to life and I completely fell in love with the classic 1960’s musical vibe in this contemporary film. The plot was something different to most romantic comedies, in that both characters are struggling in their own way and the film in turn wonderfully reflects their journey together, helping one another survive and ultimately find success in Hollywood. The film perfectly captured that feeling of falling in love, where everything is perfect, whilst also hitting us hard with the pain and heartbreak that comes with love.

La La Land (2016) Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone)

Although i loved the plot, i felt i needed MORE of everything!! The love between Stone and Gosling’s characters was beautiful, but not quite everything I wanted. Chazelle, in my opinion, should have shown MORE of their love story through dialogue and action, rather than the typical rom-com montage cop-out that he used. I did love these character’s romance, but when everything began to fall apart I was not as upset as I should’ve been because the love between these characters wasn’t as strong as it should’ve been. Greater character development was needed to really capture my heart on this one.

As for the score, yes, it was absolutely electrifying, but I struggle to describe this film as a musical because, unlike classics such as ‘Wicked’ and ‘Grease’, the songs in ‘La La Land’ did not drive the plot as far as they should have. I love musicals, and I believe that the songs should really capture every feeling, desire and hope of the characters in such a way that the songs tell the story. In this film, however, the songs were just not memorable and at times felt unnecessary. It’s hard for me to describe my feelings about this film, but essentially, it felt like a movie with songs in it, rather than a true musical. Sure, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling were wonderful actors, but their vocals were weak and the choreography was nothing impressive. overall I was disappointed by the musical aspects of the film – It did not make me want to dance all night as other musicals surely have.

If you read my trailer reaction, you would know that I really wanted to fall in love with this film, but unfortunately I just…didnt. But don’t get me wrong, ‘La La Land’ was still a brilliant film and thoroughly enjoyable, it’s just not a film that I would place as one of the best musicals of all time.

‘La La Land’ Film: 7/10