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I would like to talk to you about one of the Best Movies of 2016 collecting numerous accolades and awards this year: La La Land.
La La Land is a 2016 American romantic musical film mixing comedy and drama. This movie, starring Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend, J.K. Simmons, and Rosemarie Dewitt, has been written and directed by Damien Chazelle. It is not his first movie but his third as a director after Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench and the fantastic Whiplash receiving five Academy Awards nominations and his sixth as a writer.
The movie was a box office success grossing $445 million worldwide against a production budget of $30 million. It received numerous accolades and awards including two Critic’s Choice Movie Awards (Best Screenplay and Best Director), a record-breaking seven Golden Globes (Best Screenplay, Best Director, Best Picture for a Musical or Comedy, Best Actress and Best Actor, Best Original Score, and Best Original Song for “City of Stars”), recipient of five awards out of eleven Bafta nominations and a leading six awards out of fourteen nominations tying the record for most nominations by a single film with Titanic and All About Eve at the 89th Academy Awards.
La La Land follows the meeting and romantic story between a musician and an aspiring actress in Los Angeles during 128 minutes. The title perfectly refers to the City of Angels and the fact of being out of touch with reality. When I watched the movie, certain dance scenes reminded me of Singin’ in the Rain, Top Hat, and Umbrellas of Cherbourg but also the fact that Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone re-enact a good representation of iconic old Hollywood on-screen couples such as Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn, Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds, or Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.
In my opinion, La La Land is captivating, original, funny, passionate, full of emotions and feelings, a good reincarnation, and an open love letter to the Golden Age of Hollywood, appealing song and dance perfectly: a timeless charm (I have to admit that I left with a tear on my cheek)!
It allows the spectators to relate to the character development and themes about the struggle of making your dreams come true and being a renowned and successful artist without giving up so easily. We all have dreams or goals we would like to achieve despite the difficulty of making our own way to the Top.
Facts you did not know about the movie:
- Emma Watson turned down Emma Stone’s role to appear in Beauty and The Beast while Ryan Gosling turned down the role of the Beast to appear in La La Land. Each of them chose the right success.
- The freeway ramp used is the same one in the bus jump scene in 1994’s Speed. The six-minute opening freeway dance number took two days to film.
- This is the third time for Gosling and Stone to work together after Crazy Stupid Love and Gangster Squad.
- Damien Chazelle held film screenings every Friday night for the cast and crew; he wanted to get them in the right mind-set to recreate a classic Hollywood musical.
- Ryan Gosling spent two hours a day, six days a week taking lessons to learn the music. This way, he was able to play all the piano scenes without the help of a hand double.
I will finish by questioning the possible incompatibility between creation drive and lasting relationships. Is it still the case? That’s what the movie implies in a certain way.